Following the footprints of the giant named “Voglar”!
The Elster Valley Railway line (German: Elstertalbahn), commissioned in 1875, meanders along the river “Weiße Elster” passing through eight tunnels and over 30 major bridges. In the far south of Saxony, the route continues past the Kapellenberg mountain into the Czech Republic. It is now one of the most important railway lines within the transnational public transport system "EgroNet". To improve the image of the Elster valley route between Gera (Germany) and Cheb (Czech Republic), the Authority for local public transport Vogtland (ZVV) together with the creative agency WENN+ABER devised a new promotional campaign. Because they considered the route to be like a 'sleeping giant', they wanted to bring the giant to life.
Now visitors and residents can see huge footprints on the floor at some of the train stations and on the train itself. With the Voglar-App, users can scan the QR-Code on the floor graphics, read about the giant called Voglar and learn about his connection to each place. As the story goes, the giant has been living in the Vogtland area in disguise for the last 2000 years – but no one has ever seen him. Since 15 August 2019, people can also experience the life of Voglar in augmented reality. This includes interesting sights and tales presented by the giant, scenic beauty - even a hidden micro game can be played while waiting until the next train arrives. The system of the App can be extended, therefore, the ZVV team is open for collaborations with additional municipalities or tourist organisations that are interested in joining the scheme.
The marketing campaign has generated great interest so far and different media reported about the launch of the app. The images below provide links to a newspaper article (in German) and a television report (German with English subtitles). The pilot project of the Authority for local public transport Vogtland (ZVV) is well on its way to becoming a successful example for promoting cross-border infrastructure in peripheral areas.