Park and outdoor environments have been going through something of a renaissance in the last few years with heightened community emphasis on parks and trails projects, large regional parks, and urban park revivals. All of these projects need large scale sign investment, from markers to landmarks to interpretive elements.

Park sign programs are an area of focus for IDS. Having worked with a number of designers and planners on park and sign projects, we’ve identified key areas that planners should take into consideration when investing in park sign programs, especially as significant funding becomes available through government infrastructure plans.

1. Key Landmark

Investing in a key landmark element, whether it is a kiosk, gateway or public art sets the tones for the entire program.

2. Park Sign Program Integration

Integrating landscape and architecture with signs reinforces the strengths of the program.

3. Park Sign Program Guidelines

More than most projects, identity elements of parks spread into websites, print graphics and social media. Today’s parks can often span hundreds of miles and encompass multiple facilities so park sign program guidelines must also be flexible, providing the ability to expand and change.

4. Signage Durability

Investing in durable and easy to maintain materials is well worth the cost and effort down the road.

5. Signage Illumination

Whether through solar, reflectivity or electrical connections, an illumination program is important, particularly for maps and other display elements.

Theory in Practice

IDS built the Empire State Trail signs below for the landscape designer Starr Whitehouse working with C&G Partners. The signs are the best of what park signs should be, durable landmarks integrated with the infrastructure and surrounding landscape. Landmark signs like the one built for the New York State Welcome Center for Stantec and Huber Construction show the importance of scale and landscape. For more details on the project, view our Case Study.

IDS was also commissioned to collaborate with Bayer Landscape Architects to build and install the sign and interpretive information panels for Frank Lloyd Wright’s masterpiece, the Darwin Martin House in Buffalo. Below are some photos demonstrating the importance of program integration. For more details on the project, view our Case Study.

Ready to talk about your park sign program? Contact ID Signsystems today to discuss the key considerations above and how we can use them to improve your current program.

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