29 06 2017

2017 UITP Summit: attoma puts user journey at the heart of the debate

The agency has actively promoted the recognition of passenger journey design as a fully-fledged design discipline at the International Association of Public Transport (UITP) Summit.

Placed under the theme of transition, the last UITP Summit held in Montreal from 15th to 17th May, also demonstrated a changing of attitudes. President of the UITP Design and Culture platform, Giuseppe Attoma describes the warm reception to his presentation “User journey and user experience: showing and telling!”: “Even highly-skilled technicians now show a considerable interest for the notions of user experience and user journey, and for the narratives which facilitate working on these issues in a functional manner. Storytelling is no longer found at the end of the process, as it is a key element in the design process.”

During his PechaKucha* format presentation, attoma’s founder stressed the importance of on-the-ground site observations to be able to describe the true passenger experience and to identify problematic situations and uses. From the Paris airports to the railway and bus stations of the Milanese region, the agency designed detailed blueprints which identified quick-win solutions as well as long-term structural solutions, in terms of passenger service and information.

Another sign of growing interest for passenger experience is the 2017 UITP Design Category award won by the Gateway project in Birmingham’s New Street station. Giuseppe Attoma notes that “like the 2 other finalists, it is an architectural project. Mobility spaces are henceforth considered as living spaces, both architectural objects and places of experiences that passengers must make their own”. A mobile citizen is a fully-fledged citizen.

* Do you know PechaKucha? Launched in Japan in 2003 by two architects who were bored to tears by never ending PowerPoint presentations which were numbing their meetings. This oral presentation method is based on the “20x20” rule: to speak about a project or a particular theme, no more than 20 slides should be used with no more than 20 seconds per slide. This concept encourages both conciseness and creativity and spread around the world via the organisation of PechaKucha Nights in more than 900 cities, with the certification of a dedicated international organisation: http://www.pechakucha.org/. The Design and Culture platform campaigned for the introduction of PechaKucha, particularly well-suited to innovative projects within the UITP.