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Why Wayfinding Signage is an Important Part of City Street Furniture

Wayfinding signage is becoming an increasingly more common sight in city centres small and large. Iconic designs stand out from urban environments yet seamlessly blend in with modern civic architecture giving everyone; young and old, local and foreign a direction to discover something new or guide them along a familiar path.

A common sight in major capitals and cities like London and New York, Wayfinding signage and digital wayfinding signage have the intention of helping tourists pick out their destinations without confusion in a way that can be interpreted by anyone. The design and features of modern wayfinding signage now mean that they are so much more than guidance systems and they have become a staple sight in street furniture.

As global tourism is increasing and it becomes cheaper and easier to travel to even small and niche destinations, tourists are branching out from major cities to explore the hidden gems that surround them. Wayfinding signage in smaller towns provides a familiar solution to tourists looking to find lesser-known spots. Gentle reminders can add to their experience and ultimately further encourage more visitors through a positive experience in discovering unknown treasures.

Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) are groups of businesses coming together to help promote their area and rely on wayfinding signage, especially in tourist spots, to help direct people to businesses in a similar trade where healthy competition and teamwork means there are many benefits for customers and businesses.

Locals and tourists are using their mobile devices more in city and town centres, whether it’s searching for recommended restaurants or calling friends to meet up near a landmark. While they are using their devices, they are often looking for physical guides to help them on their journey. Digital wayfinding signs and guides give people an interactive way of finding their direction that could help them find a new favourite restaurant or even charge their device if they are running low on battery from exploring all day.

Other than being useful for connected users on mobile devices, wayfinding signage has the potential to save lives. Digital wayfinding signs have the ability to be connected to the internet and phone service, allowing lost or vulnerable members of the public to call for help. These features can provide a vital service for people of all ages who can be in desperate situations.

A more subconscious effect of increased and more helpful wayfinding signage is an increase in the use of public transport and walking or cycling. With easy routes around cities being pointed out by guides, totems and posts, members of the public can see how simple it is to travel around without the need for their own cars. Encouraging more people to leave their cars at home reduces traffic on roads at key times, reducing noise and pollution.

As more connected and smarter technologies are being included on digital wayfinding, wayfinding signage is here to stay as one of the most important parts of street furniture in modern cities.


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