What is Park Provider?
Park provider is a project that provides signage to private parks and preserves that aren’t state or nationally owned. State parks have a unified system of how signage, by law, needs to look and how to create these signs whereas privately owned parks do not. I used Mill Brook Preserve, a locally owned park in New Paltz, as my case study. Throughout my process, I explored the importance of hierarchy in signage as well as the benefits of using icons and typography to get across information in a clear and concise manner. Communicating information and direction clearly is the whole point of signage and my project helps aid in this for places that don’t have signage or don’t have signage that communicates well.
what was asked
Going into this project I set up meeting with Julie Seyfert Lillis, the executive director of Mill Brook Preserve. She was very helpful and direct in telling me what her park was in need of signage wise.
One type of sign the park needed was a good directional sign. These signs are important because they help people keep their bearing, and also feel located and secure. This type of signage can make use of landmarks or other points of interest in the park.
Another kind of signage that was discussed was signage pertaining to the wild life in the surrounding area. Mill Brook Preserve is home to many types of wild life like the wood turtle and the beaver. Julie stressed the importance of being able to inform the public about the types of animals and how to act around them.
Boarding Mill Brook Preserve is an elementary school and an old age home, making the directional and educational signs even more important. She wanted the signs to be friendly and inviting because a big chunk of the parks audience is families with smaller children.
questions I kept in mind
Some questions I kept in the back of my head during my process were things like what are people using to get around parks and trails? Are they using signs or maps or apps? How will I create a unified look for my signage that also has some sort of hierarchy for its different applications? What do I want the signage to do/ what kind of information do I want to communicate?
Throughout my process, I am confident I answered my own questions. I created a unified system by utilizing cutouts in each of the signs that I created. I did this to create a way the park goer could interact with the sign and the environment at the same time. Hierarchy was tackled by understanding what was the most important part of the sign and making it most visible from different distances away.