April 27, 2009 -
A graphic design firm hired to guide the City of Knoxville’s Downtown Wayfinding Project will present possible plans they have developed during a public meeting in the City County Building.
The meeting is set for 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 7, in the Small Assembly Room.
MERJE, a Philadelphia-based firm with extensive experience in wayfinding and branding projects, has been working for the past several weeks to design signs for downtown, scouting possible sign locations and creating a manual to keep the new system maintained and up-to-date.
Representatives of the firm were in Knoxville in early March studying the area, meeting with downtown residents and business owners and attending a public meeting to help decide what destinations should be included in the project and where signage should be located.
“At this meeting MERJE will be presenting three different options for our consideration,” said Anne Wallace, who is directing the project for the city. “We can choose one of the options, or we can select a combination of elements from the different proposals and they will take that back and put together a plan.”
“This meeting gives everyone a chance to look at the different possibilities and provide input on them,” Wallace added.
The goal of wayfinding is to make it easier for visitors to navigate around downtown as well as highlighting its attractions and offerings in an appealing – and informative – manner.
This involves everything from informing visitors and even residents where things like trolley and bus stops, parking garages and attractions are located and how to get to them.
The city wants to install a well-designed and consistent sign system that does just that, assuring users that they are in an interesting, well-managed and easily negotiated area.
The city currently has some directional sign downtown but they tends to be inconsistent, inadequate and, in some instances, in poor condition.
The project area encompasses all of downtown and World’s Fair Park. The general boundaries are the Norfolk Southern tracks on the north, the Tennessee River on the south, Hall of Fame Drive on the east and 11th Street on the west.
More information about the project is available at www.cityofknoxville.org/wayfinding.