The Korea Herald


Seoul to subway maps to get revamp for foreigners, visually impaired

By Park Jun-hee

Published : Sept. 13, 2023 - 11:47

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An illustration of Seoul's new subway map design (Seoul Metropolitan Government) An illustration of Seoul's new subway map design (Seoul Metropolitan Government)

The Seoul Metropolitan Government said Wednesday that it would update its subway map design to give riders a more comprehensive overview of the system.

The city government claimed that foreigners in Korea often find the current map challenging to use and understand.

The new subway map design will use a new layout that the city says will help riders understand multiple routes and transfer stations. The colors and patterns differentiating routes will also be upgraded, allowing travelers to navigate the subway more easily.

Also, traffic light markings will be added at transfer stations to differentiate them from regular stations, though city officials declined to give more details on what it will look like. Line No. 2 -- the subway line in Seoul with the greatest number of passengers -- will be emphasized.

Aiming to make it easier for foreigners to understand at a glance, the city government said station numbers and subway routes will also be added to the map to minimize confusion.

The new design will be introduced on Monday, and the finalized version will be rolled out in the latter half of this year.

Leading the effort to redesign the new subway map, Choi In-kyu, who heads the city government’s design policy bureau, expressed hopes that the upgraded version would make travelers’ subway use more convenient, especially for foreigners and visually impaired people.

“By applying a design that meets global standards, (the new design) is expected to contribute to making Seoul one of the top five cities in the world and boost tourism,” Choi was quoted as saying in a press release.