Campus Wayfinding Project (CWP)

Since its inception, the University of Waterloo's main campus has undergone significant change and development, evolving into what is today a large, non-linear network of buildings and destinations connected by a variety of conduits. While the campus has increased in size, density and complexity, wayfinding, orientation and navigation-related tools have not kept up.

The Campus Wayfinding Project (CWP) is focused on the very practical outcome of helping people reach their destinations quickly and confidently, while also providing a positive experience for visitors.

While the project’s primary goal is to enhance pedestrian wayfinding on campus as well as fully consider how guests arrive and navigate via vehicle, public transit and bicycle, key objectives include: 

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Improving the campus navigation experience

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Creating a sense of arrival and place, especially at campus gateways

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Developing a consistent, coordinated and scalable wayfinding system.

 

Building on Waterloo’s unique strengths the project will utilize key university data, the campus masterplan, brand guidelines and existing wayfinding information and analysis. A strong component of the early phase will be community-stakeholder consultations and a best-practice review.

The project will also consider aspects such as fiscal-responsibility, legibility, accessibility, branding, consistency, ease of maintenance, flexibility and adaptability to accommodate our ever-evolving campus. The CWP will consist of major elements such as static, fixed wayfinding signage; temporary moveable signage; digital fixed wayfinding signage; as well as related wayfinding elements. High level recommendations around digital mobile wayfinding applications will also be developed.

A Steering Committee has been struck to lead the project which is being aided by a Campus Wayfinding Advisory Group (CWAG), made up of representatives from faculties, key user groups, alumni and students.

To assist with the project the University has partnered with Entro Communications, a firm with global experience in wayfinding design. Their clients include The Royal Ontario Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art, London’s Canary Wharf and the Toronto PATH, as well as University of Calgary, Ryerson University, Ontario College of Art and Design and Waterloo’s School of Pharmacy building.

Phase one of the project will be completed this fall.