New wayfinding signage coming to Fanshawe

Illustration of exterior of Fanshawe College buildings. CREDIT: FANSHAWE COLLEGE
The new wayfinding plan will see Fanshawe's buildings split into distinct zones.

Starting Oct. 3, Fanshawe students will be seeing new wayfinding signs across the exterior and interior of the campus. The interior signage will be updated on all of the first floors in each building. The installation of all the signs will be completed by March 31, 2023.

Fanshawe has been working with Entro, a world leader in the field of branding and environmental design, to come up with the new wayfinding program. They built the new signage model focusing on how people navigate the campus and identify buildings.

Brian Bergsma is the manager of facilities planning and development at Fanshawe and he stated why the college will be needing the new signage.

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“The Oxford St. location has grown substantially since the current wayfinding system was implemented,” Bergsma said. “New buildings have been added, expanding upon the labyrinth-like series of interconnected corridors linking the buildings. There have been requests from both students and staff for quite some time to see a better wayfinding system at the Oxford St. campus, and we wanted to ensure we remain current with accessibility needs.”

The college has engaged with a wayfinding consultant to assist with clarifying the issues from the staff and students by hosting workshops and surveys. The consultants provided a wayfinding plan that was endorsed by the college leadership. For now, the new signage will only be at the Oxford St. Fanshawe campus in London, but the college hopes to spread it to the other campuses across southern Ontario.

The campus will be divided into five sections called “zones” and all signs include a colour band so people can identify easily what zone they are in. Pathways will not be changing but signs of direction will be made clearer and easier for people to navigate through the campus.

“Signs will be more effective at directing people first to zones (a group of buildings), then to individual buildings, and finally to a specific room number,” stated Bergsma.

The pandemic slowed down the ability to implement the signs, but they have overcome that obstacle and are beginning the new installations now. The college recognized the need to address ongoing requests for improved wayfinding, and to address accessibility needs through tactile signs at door sides.

“We received valuable input from students through workshops and surveys. Learning about the way students view their approach to the campus on arrival, and how they see the relationships between the buildings was integral to establishing wayfinding signage that would effectively address concerns with the current signage system,” Bergsma said.

Overall, the new signs will hopefully bring a new way of navigating through the campus. Keep an eye out for the new signage going up right now.