Sign of the times: Edmonton working on new wayfinding system for pedestrians
"People will have more confidence in navigating downtown and exploring new areas that they might not have otherwise."
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The city’s wayfinding team says it’s close to finalizing its design standard for 86 new pedestrian signs expected to go up around Edmonton by next spring.
“It’s been a bit of a journey … the signage will be lit, which was really critical for the Winter City strategy folks. Certainly our seasons are a little bit darker. There was also discussion of colouring and what would stand out from a distance,” said Ian Hosler, project manager for the Wayfinder Project, which held an open house Tuesday to present the latest design standard to stakeholders and members of the public.
Hosler said once the design standard is approved, he hopes to have the tender finalized by June so that the city can roll out interim signage in August.
“It will help support pedestrian movement around the new Rogers Place arena. We know the permanent signage won’t necessarily be ready, and some of the places — such as the area of construction of the LRT on 103rd Avenue — would preclude us from putting permanent signage there until it’s finished,” Hosler said.
Since the design of the temporary signage will be the same — excluding the lighting — it will also allow the Wayfinder team to test out the effectiveness of the signs, Hosler said.
The Wayfinder Project is also currently working on base mapping to support the interim signage and is moving toward tender for a digital product.
He said the aim is to have consistency among physical maps, a web map and potentially a phone app.
“There’s good evidence that [this project] will increase the footfall of businesses, people will have more confidence in navigating downtown and exploring new areas that they might not have otherwise, and it potentially drives people to more multimodel journeys using the LRT, pedways and bus routes,” he said.