Start Here October '22

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Page 86 of 103 81 S T A R T H E R E 2 0 2 2 • Create well-structured paths: While usually well beyond the scope of work for signage, architects, builders, and contractors should be mindful of a safe and open "pathway" for the traveler. • Create regions of differing visual character: Ah, theming and branding. We will cover this in more detail. But all success- ful systems must have directions that are sized appropriately and easily read. • Don't give the user too many navigational choices: ink of the overly complicated instructions back in the day by Sears and Roebuck to assemble furniture and contrast that to the simple instructions by Ikea. KISS – keep it simple stupid! 4 COMMON TYPES OF WAYFINDING While we could spend a whole series of podcasts on wayfind- ing, in the interest of time, let's discuss four primary types and compare and contrast them. 1 Wayfinding from a Vehicle Over the years, it has become more popular for tourist and historic main street projects to include some type of wayfinding system for people in vehicles. ese systems need to consider that they are read from a distance and take a traveling vehicle's speed into account. ere are many sources from the Department of Transportation that discuss size and best sans-serif font types to be used and vary upon the desired reading distance. Often reflective backgrounds will be mandated by code. You will often see these systems have several sign types of varying sizes that are used at thoroughfare (where cars are moving at a higher speed), smaller signs at stoplights, and special sign types in slow-mov- ing downtown/historic areas that have the hybrid job of com- municating directions to both vehicular and pedestrian traffic. Outskirt wayfinding and historic wayfinding in the same system are often differentiated by unique sign types. Keep in mind that many of these signs are installed in right- of-ways, so DOT guidelines must be followed. ey often will need a stamped engineered drawing, and most importantly, util- ity checks will be needed before any installation. I have seen a lot of companies underestimate the time and expense needed to cover these requirements. 2 Parks, Zoos & Universities Directions to fun and games or getting to that boring English lecture? ese projects have a lot of creative potential. ey also often have the unique wayfinding "buddy" — the park map — that is usually given out with the entrance ticket or the multi-thousand-dollar tuition bill. ese two resources, when created with the same goal, can be invaluable to the trav- eler. Like the signage for vehicular traffic, these signs are usu- ally exterior but can be smaller since pedestrian traffic is moving by foot. For both, it is important to design and fabricate with appropriate materials that can handle harsh environments, UV rays, and regretfully a potential vandal with a can of spray paint. Let's use zoos as a fun example of creative wayfinding. Often, they will have several different exhibit areas. Wayfinding can direct, identify, and expand the experience for the traveler. ey The dictionary defines wayfinding as the process or activity of ascertaining one's position and planning and following a route. You can look at wayfinding as the visual language of moving people through space. Guidance on Wayfinding Projects Listen to JD Hamilton break all of this down and more on The GRAPHICS PRO Files.

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