Stockholm’s Public Transportation Administration (SL) commissioned Topp to design a travel app experience that leaves nobody behind.
SL moves over 800 000 commuters a day: children and elderly travellers, people with a range of physical capabilities, and thousands of tourists and visitors as well. Topp was tasked with creating an app that worked for all of them.
Working in conjunction with KnowIT, Topp was able to integrate all of SL’s services into a single, accessible mobile app, launching in May of 2016. By combining schedule information, travel planning and ticket purchasing into a single, simple package, the design surpassed SL’s expectations by attracting over 270 000 users in its first three months.
“Early on, Topp understood our challenges and desires, and we have worked very closely together. The result is an app that is easy to use with nearly 1 million downloads in just the first few months.”
Anyone can make a generic travel app, but SL didn’t see itself as a generic transit agency. They wanted something that felt personal, unique, iconic—and also marketable. Transit is there to move people, so people needs to be at the centre.
‘Leave no traveler behind’ became a project mantra. That meant research, to understand who was using the SL system and what they needed. We focused especially on vulnerable and underserved groups—visually impaired riders, families with small children, recent arrivals—not just obvious, regular users.
Stockholm is different from other cities, and SL needed to communicate that. There’s warmth in a cold climate, modernity mixed with history, friendliness and pragmatism. It’s a crisp, orderly city, but also very human. The app feels that way too.