The app and the book that capture the reinvention of the metro map

Philip Barker
Kettering 52° 23' 55.752" N, -0° 43' 32.988" E

Architect Jug Cerovic has made a name for himself as the man behind a subway map revolution, and now his creations are coming together in the form of One Metro World, a Kickstarter-backed book and smartphone app. Read on to find out more, and to be in with a chance of getting the app for free!

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One Metro World comprises 40 cities and 40 metro maps all in the same style. The last time we spoke to Jug, the architect had created new subway maps for 12 major cities across the world, aiming to offer an easier to read, more consistent experience for travellers, and over the past couple of years Jug has expanded his portfolio to cover 28 more subway systems around the planet.

The additional 28 maps has seen Jug’s INAT design cover stations spread all around the world from Nanjing, Tianjin and Xi’an, to Mexico, Mumbai and St Petersburg, but with the same graphic language, symbols and syntax rules, travellers will immediately feel at home no matter where they are.

We’ve seen Harry Beck take a similar approach when it came to redesigning the London Underground map, but although plenty of metro systems now offer a similar schematic style, they’re still different enough to confuse travellers when faced with an unfamiliar map. Jug’s series of maps, dubbed ‘INAT’, aims to provide constant themes, colouring and characteristics to make new cities and locations feel like home.

40 maps spread over 160 pages!

The 40 maps are spread over 160 pages, bound in a hard cover, and unlike the last time we spoke to Jug, the book also comes with an Android or iOS version of the INAT app. The neat and simplistic styling of the book is a fitting home for Jug’s maps, which are designed to offer more than a regular mapping experience.

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“A metro system is much more than a transportation network,” says Jug. “It is a parallel universe where space is contracted and time is inflated. By travelling on a train that runs straight from station to station, through tunnels and without obstacles, one can cover much greater lengths in the same given time frame compared to surface travel, and can cross a set distance much faster.”

Jug points out that metro maps need to include the particular context and mechanisms of potential journeys, which includes the ways that lines connect stations and their relevance to one another. He also adds that the actual geography is irrelevant.

The familiarity of schematic maps makes the style of mapping in One Metro World and the INAT app a natural choice, with Jug aiming to create a map-based graphic language that could achieve universal understanding across continents and cultures.

Making maps easier to understand

Jug adds: “It needs to be consistent and straightforward enough to be intuitively understandable, without prior learning or even a key. The INAT graphic language is an attempt at reaching such goal.”

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“INAT’s components are clearly defined and hierarchically organised to enable immediate comprehension whilst a limited number of composition guidelines ensure the coherence of the layout.”

The maps looked fantastic the last time we saw them, but with locations more than trebled in number and the maps bound together in one place, things are looking brighter than ever for Jug’s INAT design.

Interested in getting your hands on a copy of One Metro World and the INAT app? Jug has followed in the footsteps of a host of other Kickstarter-backed maps, with the One Metro World project running on Kickstarter until October 26, with the app available for €8 and the book and app for €42.

Free offer for 500 readers

We’re giving away 500 copies of the full INAT app to 500 readers. All you have to do is follow @here on Twitter and retweet our tweet below before 3pm CEST on October 23. The first 500 of you to do so will receive download instructions for the app, which should be available by the end of 2016. We’ll contact you via direct message to get your email address, and you’ll then get the full download details from Jug Cerovic. Love legal documents? Fear not, terms and conditions apply.

 

https://twitter.com/here/status/788724210969354240

We think that Jug's creations are truly a work of art, but we'd love to know what you think - leave a comment below and let us know.

Topics: Transit, Mobile apps, Features, Editor's picks

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