VR has been transporting customers for 160 years. In addition to celebrating our history, we wanted to learn what the future of train travel could look like. This project was our way to open a dialogue about the ecosystem of mobility in 2072.
We worked together with futurist Elina Hiltunen who facilitated three futures workshops; two for VR personnel and one for IT Master’s degree students from Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences. We also wanted to know what children and youth thought about the future of train travel, so in collaboration with The Children and Youth Foundation and Tulevaisuuskoulu (”Futures School”) we organised three workshops. Altogether, approx. 130 people of different ages contributed to our futures work in the workshops. Based on our background research and the results of the workshops, the story of an alternative, positive future of train travel was created.
We also wanted to look into AI for visual inspiration to the year 2072. We used DALL-E to create images of future trains, pods, hologram experiences etc. based on the findings of the workshops. These AI-created images were used as inspiration with our partner ZOAN when they created the world of train travel in 2072 in 3D environment – making the future more concrete and visual. The end result with ZOAN is a video that imagines what the future train travel could look like.
The topic of train travel or ecosystem of mobility in 2072 is very interesting and contemporary. When infrastructure development decisions are made, they usually look decades ahead and influence mobility for even longer. That is why we need to look forward and study and imagine what travel could look like – to make future-proof decisions today.
The end result of this futures work is one alternative, possible and positive image of the future. The main definition of “positive image of the future” and the guiding light has been sustainability and environment – themes especially important to children and youth.