Wayfinding for Sergiev Posad
Blessed regulations and requirements for the wayfinding system
Strelka KB is the largest Moscow-based consulting company famous for their systematic and modular urban works. Strelka deals with large amount of towns and territories across Russia and attracts a lot of third-party proffesionals for their projects. In 2018 we were fascinated to take part in the process of making Sergiev Posad a better place. After finishing the handbook about wayfinding in monotowns, we had been asked to help with the same thing in Sergiev Posad.

Client: Strelka KB

Work: content, consulting, illustration

Angel view on the Trinity Lavra of Saint Sergius in Sergiev Posad
Sergiev Posad is the town to the north from Moscow, part of the Golden ring with a Lavra at its core, what makes it a religious center and a touristic place overall. Strelka KB has offered an entire concept of reconstructing the whole center, making it more friendly for pedestrians, tourists and residents.

Igor Makovsky with mother, 1995
Sergiev Posad town guidelines: wayfinding in the historical part of town
Walk the ways of the piligrim
At the beginning, there was a hypothesis in Strelka KB, that writing the single well-thought united wayfinding rules would be enough to implement the whole system even without visiting Sergiev Posad.
There happen to be a lot of unexpected reality stuff to deal with
After the day, spent walking the touristic routes round and about the town center of Sergiev Posad (almost 25km in total), I came to conclusion, that every route and road had to be worked out in details because of the reality that kicked in.
Igor Makovsky
So, we've made a map and put a circle around almost every distinctive intersection for making a detailed drawing. Here's the map:
Map of Sergiev Posad art-directed by Margarita Kurtser, design by Ilya Ovcharenko
And here are a few detailed mini maps, where colored lines represent the touristic routes with wayfinding elements placed along them.
Every single situation was carefully described by the team lately so as to clarify why wayfinding element had to be put in that exact location and how will it correspond with the touristic routes.
Decision making points — the places down the route where the tourist can mess things up and head the wrong way
Placement outside touristic routes
For every other case, the placement of every wayfinding element had been described and carefully illustrated in the special section. It was important to describe specifics of placement by the enbankments also.
Historical and private buildings
When it comes to hanging plaques on the buildings, it was very important to separate the types of buildings. This is the excerpt on the house plaques:
Rules that apply to the historical and administrative houses in town and private buildings are separated
Wayfinding elements
Every single element we suggested for use was described according to the contents, materials, sizes. Note that there were no task to work on the graphical design, nor town brand for Sergiev Posad, so we left that for later.
Colors that can be used
As mentioned before, design has been talked about in general terms. It was important to explain the most common mistakes and help with the proven ones results. This one is for the color combinations:
Rules that apply to the historical and administrative houses in town and private buildings are separated
Fonts that can be used
According to the personal experience on how low quality historical cyrillic fonts are loved in any of russian towns, it was important to held a research on the historical signs and prove that variety of fonts that can be used is much wider, than any might think.
Sergiev Posad wayfinding
We're not aware if this project was fully implemented or not. Yet in 2023 we've seen a number of improvements in town and were happy with the result.
  • KB Strelka
  • Yana Kozak,
    Daria Borzova,
    Elizabeth Gubskaya,
    Alena Pavlyuk,
    Alena Bereberdina
  • Igor Makovsky
    Content in wayfinding section, consultant, illustrator
  • Margarita Kurtser, Ilya Ovcharenko
    Handbook design
More projects in Russia and CIS
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2016 … 2018
2016 … 2021