Wayfinding is heavily ingrained in our subconscious. Why is it, however, that we are so unaware of it? Wayfinding can be as simple as a stop sign – red + octagon = stop – or as complex as navigating a busy international airport. Over time, we adapt to wayfinding elements – such as signage – as they become part of our subconscious day-to-day interactions.
Wayfinding is all around us. Airports are a great location to study the effects of wayfinding in action – as airports must move thousands of people – speaking numerous languages – through their doors every day.
When Calgary Airport in Alberta, Canada, began planning a major expansion to include the addition of two new concourses with 24 new gates, they knew a smooth transition would require an expert team of wayfinding professionals. The plan to expand Calgary Airport (YYC) included the addition of two new concourses to accommodate the increasing number of U.S.
Who doesn’t love a little bit of wayfinding inspiration?
Signage is mere background noise . . . until it’s not.
The true unsung heroes are wayfinding experts who help us get from point A to point B without a hitch. You won’t ever consciously stop to thank them, but – in the event you get lost – you may very well stop to curse them.