The city of Idaho Falls’ wayfinding project started in 2013 with an idea for better signs at the Idaho Falls Zoo. Since then, the program has expanded to include monuments, a network of signs near key trails and roadways as well as a thorough city rebranding.
There’s more planned, but efforts thus far have allowed the city to market a unified identity to tourists, Parks and Recreation Division Director Greg Weitzel said. The first wayfinding sign was erected in May 2016. Since then, nearly 150 signs have been raised, with only a few more to go, Weitzel said.
The signs are uniform, with a blue-and-white color scheme. They include arrows pointing pedestrians and motorists toward key destinations, such as downtown or the Civic Auditorium. Each sign features different destinations based on its proximity to those locations.
If people have an easy time getting around, they’re more likely to visit a city again, Hunt Design Principal Jennifer Bressler said. Bressler’s California firm was chosen to work on the city’s wayfinding project in 2013. “City after city has trouble getting people out of their cars downtown and walking; wayfinding can help with that,” Bressler said. “The traffic with the eclipse was sort of perfect timing if you think about the exposure Idaho Falls got. The signs helped circulation and getting people to different destinations.”
Several monuments also were built as a way to “welcome people to the city,” Bressler said. The most prominent is a rock sculpture on Broadway Street near Interstate 15 that features a waterfall and the city’s new logo. The logo presents the city’s name in capital letters with blue, wavy lines to reference the falls. The logo was born from the monument design process, and now appears on everything from city stationary to public safety vehicles.
“Everybody that lives there knows what Idaho Falls is to them. I think this large natural resources-gateway element and lots of activities and improvements downtown created something for people to hang their hat on, and the logo started to feel more and more what Idaho Falls wanted to be,” Bressler said.
The logo features clean, modern typography to balance downtown’s historic business facades, Bressler said. The wave-lined water element came out of meetings with several dozen elected officials and stakeholders.
Read the full article by Kevin Trevellyan at postregister.com.
(Image courtesy of the City of Idaho Falls)