In our "Station of the Future" project, we tested innovative service solutions and new ideas for environmentally friendly onward travel at 16 stations across Germany from 2019 to 2021 in order to increase the satisfaction of travelers and visitors. In addition to innovative services to improve traveler information, the main aim was to make the stay at the station more attractive and sustainable for our customers.
Improvements include wifi systems, new short-use work stations and sustainable shopping options, as well as the exclusive use of renewable energy to power all 16 of our future-focused stations.
We are testing different measures and services at each station:
More climate protection, less food waste
In Wolfsburg, for example, the station garden offers customers seats surrounded by plants, and the entrance hall features a moss-covered wall (measuring 34 square metres) that enhances the indoor climate at the station. Over in Berlin, we are doing our bit to reduce food waste: a vending machine at Bornholmer Strasse station only sells food that has been "saved" from being thrown away. Prices are reduced by up to 80 percent. The machine is our way of keeping excess food and items out of the rubbish before they reach their ultimate use-by dates.
Innovative bicycle service for our customers
Other stations of the future feature additional bike stands, charging stations for e-bikes and free mobile repair stations. The goal here is to make it easier for customers to switch between rail and two-wheel transport.
At several stations of the future, such as in Ahrensburg, we’ve launched "DB Rad+". With the app bike riders can track the number of kilometers they’ve pedaled and then cash it in with participating partners. This program encourages more people to ride bikes in the city while supporting local partners and service providers at the same time.
We are testing two automated bike parking facilities at our station of the future in Halle (Saale). The multi-storey units keep commuters' bikes safe and protect them from the weather.
Solar seats for spending time and recharging mobile phones
Two "solar benches" have been installed outside Halle (Saale) station, offering the city's residents the opportunity to charge their mobile phones while they take a break.
Another smart idea: the Too Good to Go app lets residents order unsold groceries from participating shops at the station and buy them at a discount shortly before closing time.
Free drinking water and wildflower meadows for more biodiversity
Another new thing at Ahrensburg station is a drinking water dispenser we have set up in partnership with HAMBURG WASSER. In the station building, people traveling can help themselves to water, filling bottles and cups free of charge.
We have also tested intelligent bins that automatically separate litter. Renningen station offers butterflies a new home: we have created a meadow of flowers as a way to promote biodiversity.