We have an intuitive sense that the purpose of transportation is to speed up travel. That makes lots of sense when you are in a hurry.
But what if you are not in a hurry? What if you want a cheap and more pleasant ride? this is not a problem that gets high priority. To the contrary, the press — and me too — is agog over the hyperloop and supersonic passenger services. And yet, there may be a place fo rthis.
At least the founders of Locomore in Germany thought so. They were able to crowdfund a new train line between Berlin and Stuttgart that is cheaper and nicer than the usual service.
Locomore has divided its train into quasi-social zones themed to attract passengers with similar interests. Current themes (the plan is to change them over time) include photography, sport, and, for those who just want to chat, Kaffeeklatsch (which loosely translates as “coffee tattle”). A special family zone is laid out to grant a little more space for children. Put all together, the train sounds more like some sort of alternative community than a daily train service.
And it offers suitable food and beverages.
I think this will catch on. Not just for the experience itself, but for the membership in a community of shared interests. A lifestyle.