To foreigners coming to Moscow, everything might seem like a blur of centuries old buildings and even older train stations where people don’t smile. It’s hard to get an informed mental map of a city when you’re new in town.
This conundrum is not lost on Hoodmaps. Created by self-described nomad Pieter Levels, this crowd-sourced platform allows natives of the city to “paint” different areas of Moscow with six colors coded under tags “uni”, “hipsters”, “tourists”, “rich”, “suits”, and “normies,” as well as manually input labels, so that clueless tourists can get a quick survey of the city from an insider’s perspective. The design is beautifully democratic: if someone posts a label you disagree with (“Chechen” above your house in Kvartal), you can “downvote” it to cancel out their opinion.
Well, it’s confirmed: Ivanosvkaya Gorka might as well be located in Portland as indicated by the bright yellow zoning users have input to the local Hoodmap.
The tool has a more professional purpose, as well. Urban city-planners and architects use Hoodmaps to view how the public perceives their own city. By collecting this info, they can optimize development for residents.
The idea for the map came after Levels had a friend coming to Amsterdam and being a good native dutch, he has created a map for Amsterdam which showed the places the friend should visit and avoid.
— Pieter Levels @ 🇺🇸 (@levelsio) 4 сентября 2015 г.
In other words, if you’re a native, everyone wants your knowledge of where all the suits and normies hang out. You can also view tons of other major cities on the website for when you go abroad