From Sereda Fairs to Economy of the Future

Furmanov city center development concept

Furmanov city center development project won the competition «Small Towns and Historical Settlements» of the Ministry of Construction of Russia in 2020. The project is aimed at creation of a touristic brand, encouragement of small business, strengthening of local communities and creative potential of the town and as a result, the creation of a new vector for Furmanov evolution.

Furmanov, Ivanovo region, Russia
2019 — 2021
Furmanov Administration, Government of Ivanovo region


Furmanov is a monocity in the Ivanovo region, which grew out of the trade-factory village Sereda. In the Soviet era, the town flourished thanks to spinning and weaving factories and an exemplary model of trading system, the Furmanov Torg.


Sereda was famous for its fairs, people were talking about the village as merchant, commercial and rich. The trading spirit of the place was preserved in the Soviet era — the Furmanov Torg became a brand of all-Union scale. People were coming for shopping in Furmanov from all over the region, and the experience of a high culture of trade attracted people from all over the country. Furmanov Torg united the first USSR supermarkets, shops and cafes, decorated by the best carpenters and artists, exemplary service and fruit bars for a healthy lifestyle. Over time, the Torg trading system collapsed, and public spaces fell into disrepair. The town needs a new path of development.

The New Torg

The concept of the New Torg is based on the key elements of Furmanov’s historical identity: it combines the entertainment and creative spirit, the exchange of knowledge and cooperation inherent in the Russian fair, with the progressive ideas and high culture of trade. This exemplary culture of trade was the main feature that the Furmanov Torg was famous for. The New Torg is an active and pleasant quarter in the city center that offers a variety of scenarios for residents and tourists;  a new touristic brand; and a space for community that involves entrepreneurs, activists and regional partners.

Opening of New Torg

On the opening day, new urban spaces were filled with life and activity. Local products were sold in kiosks on the Fair Square, master-classes were held in a large round pavilion. The Park at the Ravine and amphitheater at the pond became a venue for the environmental program:  lilac planting,  plant swaps, morning yoga classes. A plein-air was held in the park overlooking the temple.

Fair Square

The territory in front of the market, which was an area with chaotic parking and illicit trade, turned into a Fair Square. It can be used for everyday trade and yearly thematic fairs which attract tourists to Furmanov. The large round pavilion offers not only rest, but also it is an open trade space. Shopping kiosks serve as information objects in addition to its main function — on their surfaces there is information about the traditions of Sereda Fairs and the history of the Furmanov trade.



The abandoned area of the ravine is transformed into a place to relax and meet friends. Amphitheater, new stairs and wooden promenade appeared on the pond. All objects are made in the same style as New Torg.


Park near the train station

Cozy park for local residents also serves as a zone of hospitality for tourists. In the park there are benches for quiet recreation, an information stand for acquaintance with the city and an arch symbolizing the gate to Furmanov. Result of the well-designed landscaping work, there is a magnificent view of the Church of Sorrow, the main city attraction.


City brand

The New Torg is becoming a recognizable tourist brand. The visual language developed for the quarter is used on various elements: navigation objects, posters, packaging goods.

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