Wayfinding Signage to Improve Event Accessibility
When hosting an event, don’t forget accessibility in order to promote inclusivity and ensure that anyone can attend and participate.
According to the Office for Civil Rights, accessibility is achieved by allowing everyone access to the same information, experiences, and services as non-disabled people. If you wish to promote accessibility, people with disabilities should be able to enjoy your event in the same manner as those without disabilities.
Due to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which was passed in 1990, accessible events are even required by law. According to this law, all public events must provide accommodations for people with disabilities.
What steps can you take to make sure your event is inclusive, accessible, and compliant with ADA requirements? One way to ensure that everyone can enjoy your event is to feature wayfinding signage throughout the venue to provide guidance as to how to best navigate the space.
Discover the different types of wayfinding signage, and check out our favorite wayfinding solutions for inspiration on how you can make your next event more accessible for all.
What is Wayfinding Signage?
Wayfinding signage is used to help people find their way around a physical location, such as an event venue or building. This type of signage typically aims to answer the questions “Where Am I?” and “Where Am I Going?”. By directing visitors from point to point through the event space with highly visible or braille signage, attendees can feel more comfortable and confident navigating the venue.
Wayfinding signage is especially beneficial to those with disabilities because it provides them with the resources they need to feel confident attending an event. Wayfinding signage should meet specific requirements in order to be easily read and comply with the ADA, including:
- Color: Wayfinding signage should be high contrast, meaning a dark colored background should be paired with light letters or a light colored background with dark letters.
- Characters: Font should be sans serif and characters should be uppercase only.
- Placement: Wayfinding signage for entrances must be placed nine inches to the side of the door and between 48 inches and 60 inches above the floor.
It is important to keep this criteria in mind when designing and creating wayfinding signage for maximum accessibility and compliance.
Types of Wayfinding Signage
At an event or venue, there are four different purposes for wayfinding signage — directional, identification, information, and regulatory.
Directional signage aims to assist people in finding their way around a venue. Arrows, directories, and maps are common examples of directional signage used to aid in navigation. By incorporating symbols in directional signage, you can improve accessibility and wayfinding for those with low vision.
Identification signage is typically used to mark the locations of key points within an event space. Instead of providing directions, these signs mark the point where you have arrived at the specified location. Areas that need to be identified include restrooms, common rooms, event spaces, entryways, and exits, among others. The ADA wheelchair symbol, for example, indicates that a restroom is handicap accessible.
Informational signage provides important information regarding the venue or building in general such as amenities, business information, and more. A few examples of informational wayfinding signage includes hours of operation, Wi-Fi passwords, and signs displayed at the reception desk. Adding braille helps make the information, amenities, and venue to be accessible for all.
In order to provide a safe environment for all attendees, it is important to display regulatory signs wherever needed. This type of wayfinding signage lets people know the rules of the venue as well as any safety concerns. Common examples of regulatory signage include “No Smoking” and “Employees Only.” Additionally, safety symbols, such as the ADA warning sign, alerts people to use caution due to a potential hazard.
Other Helpful Wayfinding Solutions
In addition to signage, wall wraps, stair wraps, and banners can also be used for wayfinding purposes at event venues.
Wall wraps are decals made of vinyl that can be applied to the walls or any other flat surface in your venue. They can largely display arrows and other messaging in order to improve low-vision accessibility and further guide attendees around an event space. Due to their size and customizability, they offer an innovative and unique wayfinding solution for any of your events. Furthermore, they can easily be removed if your event is temporary or generally moves venues on a regular basis.
An eye-catching stair wrap is an effective way to guide attendees to the event space. By covering the entire stairwell with decorative graphics or messaging, you can provide directions for events not held on the first floor. Additionally, stair wraps can help direct traffic by pointing to nearby elevators or ramps that are wheelchair accessible for those that cannot use the stairs.
Banners are also typically used at events for wayfinding purposes. They can easily be displayed in a variety of ways including hung from the ceiling, mounted to a wall, draped inside the building, or on a stand for increased visibility.
Examples of Past Event Wayfinding Signage
1. Technology Innovation Policy and Driving Innovation Awards Dinner
This wayfinding sign, featured at the Technology Innovation Policy and Driving Innovation Awards Dinners, points attendees to the correct floor that the event will take place on.
2. Hilton Global Supplier Summit
Hilton’s wall wrap at their Global Supplier Summit guides attendees up the stairs to the correct space. The large font and variety of arrows allow the information to be easily seen for maximum accessibility.
3. Optum Ignition
Hung from the balcony of the event space, this large banner at the Optum Ignition event lets attendees know that they have arrived at the correct place for the convention. The placement and size of the banner allows it to be easily seen from all angles.
Wayfinding Solutions at Heritage BlueFire
Do you need help creating custom wayfinding signage in order to make your next event more accessible? Here at Heritage BlueFire, we are experts in creating high-quality wayfinding signage, wall wraps, stair wraps, and banners. We can even add customized braille and dimensional lettering to your signs for added accessibility in a way that matches your branding or event.
When working with us on a project, we desire to exceed your expectations at all stages of the process. After creating your custom wayfinding solution, we can schedule the installation based on your availability.
If you have any questions about our wayfinding solutions or any of our other product offerings, don’t hesitate to contact us via the button below. We would love to help you create unique and accessible wayfinding solutions that are perfect for your upcoming event!