Signs of the times
Upon returning from winter break, you probably noticed that our campus got a bit of a face-lift while you were out — there are new signs, stickers and directories all over the place. Eventually, the old signs, such as the hanging green and gold shingles, will all disappear.
It isn’t just about a slick presentation; it’s an over-arching effort to improve both the student and visitor experiences at Utah Valley University through improved wayfinding signage. At a glance, first-timers and old-timers alike should be able to see uniformity in navigation and style across the entire campus. In other words, each piece of campus should feel like campus, with consistent colors, fonts and styles on the window vinyls, hanging signs and floor directories. With that consistency, newcomers should be able to easily figure out which building they’re currently in, and what buildings are nearby.
Navigating our campus halls can be intimidating for visitors if we don’t provide a seamless wayfinding experience. How long did it take you to get your bearings when you first arrived at UVU? Days? Weeks? First-time visitors should be able to find any given destination without back-tracking or asking a dozen passersby. And this first-time visitor could be a prospective student; or a UVU senior with an elective class in an area of campus they’d never previously explored; or an out-of-towner coming to a basketball game.
A more subtle aspect of wayfinding is the control of circulation in the hallways. Have you ever bumped into a lost student standing stumped at the intersection of two hallways, wondering where to go?
What’s more, how many students make their way from class to class via the main thoroughfares simply because they don’t know the most direct routes in smaller hallways? A good wayfinding system can alleviate congestion by teaching travelers efficient navigation.
The interior signage is nearing completion. Around May 1, we will begin overhauling our exterior signage around campus, which will help drivers on our roads the same way we hope to help pedestrians in our hallways.
— Mike Maughan