Submission - Offical Map: Water Transport Routes, St. Petersburg, Russia

Submitted by nelequetan.

Here’s a very pleasant map that shows the “Akvabusy” water transportation routes in St. Petersburg, Russia, which were introduced only a few years ago in 2010. The service only runs from the end of May until October each year as the city’s rivers and canals all freeze over in winter. The fleet — as shown at the bottom of the map — consists of everything from small 12-seat water taxis all the way up to 120-seat hydrofoils that can reach speeds of 65km/h.

The map itself is very clearly laid out and makes good use of 30/60 degree angles to represent the islands and canals of the city. This does make the one really odd angle — on the blue Central Line to the east of the Summer Garden stop — stand out like a sore thumb, however. I’m also not sure that the little “flick” in the red Kurortnaya line as it nears Kronstadt (in the map’s inset) is really necessary.

The map also has other useful information: the distance to nearby Metro stations is marked where appropriate (although 1,100 metres — over a kilometre! — is hardly a “short walk”), as are the names of the city’s famous bridges, both of which are great for general orientation and getting around.

My one main problem with this map is that the type is tiny and very hard to read. All the iterations I’ve seen are online bitmap graphics with a maximum width of just 1000px or so. A lot of the type, especially the English subtitle labelling, is almost impossible to make out at that resolution.

Our rating: Looks good, contains useful information, but teeny-tiny type lets it down somewhat. Three stars.

3 Stars

(Source: Transport in St. Petersburg website. An almost identical version with only four routes can be found here.) 

Detail of the Giant Rail Map in Moskovsky Station, St. Petersburg, Russia

A view of this monumental map in its entirety can be seen in this previous post.

(Source: jimmyrtw/Flickr)

Unofficial Map: St. Petersburg Metro, Russia

I came across this map while browsing Flickr last night, and was totally blown away by it. This map of St. Petersburg’s Metro system is simply gorgeous and is far, far better than the current official map. Definitely one of my favourite maps of the year so far.

Have we been there? No.

What we like: So many things! The lovely pattern used for the waterways, the stylish icons for points of interest, the inclusion of the city’s bridges as reference points, the clever use of colour to differentiate the Cyrillic station names from their Romanised equivalents, the beautifully abstracted geography, the circle shape of the city limits (and the wonderful negative space it creates around the map)… I could go on and on.

What we don’t like: The placement of the interchange station markers where Lines 1 and 2, and also 2 and 3, cross could be a little better and more consistent with the other interchange stations. The placement of the station at the 2/3 interchange seems particularly odd, as the coloured dots don’t lie directly over the route line they represent.

Our rating: Astounding work. Clear, graphically bold, gorgeous, useful. 5 stars!

5 Stars!

(Source: k3sotnikova/Flickr)