Forest Park is a 1,400-acre gem in the center of a sprawling metropolis. Twelve million visitors a year enjoy the Zoo, Art and History Museums, Science Center, and multiple events, arts and sporting opportunities. Dedicated in 1874, it was originally designed for horses and buggies. Today, those meandering roadways create confusion for visitors and conflicts between vehicles and pedestrians.
Forest Park Forever convened a group of stakeholders from each of the primary destinations in the park to address this issue. They called on Corbin Design to help them navigate both the cultural and physical processes required to bring this project to completion.
The first task: build awareness of all that Forest Park has to offer. Second, inform all visitors that there are several ways to enter and exit the park. Finally, give visitors a sense for the distance between major destinations, so they can choose to walk rather than drive from place to place.
- A complete analysis of the current wayfinding system including observations, recommendations and comparisons to other U.S. parks was developed at the outset, guiding all design decisions.
- Vehicular guide signs are the heart of the wayfinding program, directing to primary destinations throughout the Park.
- Pedestrian kiosks feature maps to help people orient themselves relative to the rest of the Park. On the opposite side of each kiosk, interpretive panels share the history and future of the Park’s points of interest.
- The sign system includes destination and parking identification, regulatory signage for vehicles and pedestrians, and a number of pedestrian "fingerpost" signs to reinforce that people are still walking toward their desired destination.
This system of signage elements creates a “connective tissue” that moves people effectively through the space. But the project’s other primary value lies in new connections between the park’s stakeholders, and a new way to speak about the park as an integrated whole, leading to an enhanced visitor experience.