With the Transport System Bögl (TSB), the Max Bögl Group has developed a market-ready maglev train that combines innovative technology, everyday usability and intermodality into a new infrastructural instrument.
Through the application of prefabricated features and the integration of track and maglev technology, the company has achieved an extreme reduction in dimensions.
GRAFT was commissioned to propose the implementation of such a new technology in an urban or rural context. This included developing routes and stations for the intelligently controlled, driverless rail system that seeks to contribute to a low-noise, low-emission future of the city. In addition to designing the routes themselves, the objective was to also ensure their adaptability at intermodal transport intersections.
Taking up the logic of the TSB system, which is produced serially with a high percentage of premanufactured elements, GRAFT’s design envisages a modular system that uses prefabricated components that can be applied to meet the different requirements of the various station types. These modular elements can be used to construct stations with one, two or more tracks, center or side platforms or combinations of these.
One modular component is a curved roof section made in two different sizes, which can be used to create smart, functional spaces of varying dimensions. The curved roof becomes a connecting element that reoccurs in various guises and characterizes the outward appearance of the stations. In their scale and rhythm, these roof sections also establish a formal connection to the city. And while the linear nature of the tracks becomes wider and more sculpted at the stations, in the urban environment it becomes a minimal, static, constructional element. The technical aesthetic of the system stands in contrast to the smooth, dynamic forms of the stations, creating a unique architectural situation at each location.
The elevated TSB system carries passengers through the city at the top-floor height of its residential buildings. Roof elements define the platforms as autonomous urban zones: for stations featuring a central platform, the curved sections create a central space that is separated from the tracks by a system of automatic doors. Openings in the roof and lateral glazing afford the platforms a sense of spaciousness, providing a clear overview even during periods of maximum use. For stations with side platforms, the curved roof section forms a space that is separated from the city while still maintaining a visual connection to it.
In certain areas, the façade can also be closed using specially manufactured pieces. To keep the space open and uncomplicated, essential technical features, such as lighting, displays and information systems and seating, are integrated into the roof elements and the sections containing the automatic doors.
Thanks to its self-sufficient technology, the TSB maglev system could be employed globally in numerous locations and across many applications. Besides providing the designs for maglev stations, GRAFT also proposed a fictional but viable maglev route map for Berlin, connecting locations that would unlock huge potential in the development of the city—the main station, the Charité hospital, the Charité Campus Virchow Klinikum and the new TXL Urban Tech Republic. With the stations Charité Mitte and Charité Campus Virchow Klinikum, two central locations could be combined into a joint campus between which patients, staff, researchers and materials could quickly and easily travel.