Designers tasked to create ‘tomorrow’s trains’ in £3.5m project

Designers are being tasked to create ideas for ‘tomorrow’s trains’, as part of a project to overhaul passenger rolling stock in the UK.

Still from FutureRailway animation
Still from FutureRailway animation

Up to £3.5 million is available in grant money from the Department for Transport to fund design concepts.

The competition is being organised by the Royal Institute of British Architects and FutureRailway, a cross-industry research group setup by the rail industry to support innovation.

The designs will be concepts initially, but FutureRailway says they may be built, depending on the reaction of manufacturers and train specifiers. FutureRailway says it hopes the designs will ‘generate business either in the UK or Worldwide’.

The competition, which is still being finalised, will be organised into two challenge themes – 4Cs Train Challenge and Next-Gen Train interiors.

FutureRailway says, ‘The aim of the competition is two-fold: to build UK capability and showcase what the UK supply chain can offer.’

The 4Cs Train Challenge will look at ideas for long-term designs for rolling stock which ‘push the envelope of what can be delivered by rolling stock’. Designs will take into account industry objectives to reduce costs and carbon emissions whilst increasing capacity and customer satisfaction, according to FutureRailway.

The Next-Gen Train interiors strand accepts designs for rolling stock interiors to be implemented in the medium-term. These should focus on flexibility, with FutureRailway encouraging applications that can be adapted to meet different service requirements.

A pre-launch workshop will take place next week to finalise the competition, which will launch in full next month. More details can be found at

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  • John Dunne November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    Will this be open to all designers or just corporations and Registered Companies or can any designer have a go at it weather they be employed by a company or as an individual even if they have no real Qualifications in design or engineering but have the talent to design.

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