You Can Get There: Wayfinding Within and Beyond the Standards

APA North Carolina Chapter


Thursday, September 28, 2017
4 p.m. - 5:15 p.m. EDT

CM | 1.25

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Wayfinding systems are essential tools for legible communities. Wayfinding information clarifies routes and helps users comfortably reach destinations. The provision of navigational elements enhance awareness, economic investment, and environmental benefits, all while contributing to community pride. This session will focus on wayfinding best practices for bicycle, pedestrian and vehicular networks in urban and rural areas.

Guidance on destination selection and prioritization, an essential part of wayfinding, is almost non-existent in the MUTCD.  An understanding of wayfinding best practices is needed so that the full benefit of wayfinding systems may be realized by the communities who implement them. Furthermore, municipalities across the nation have been surprised by the design requirements attached to federal funding sources when attempting to design and install their wayfinding systems.  Departments of Transportation around the country exhibit varying levels of flexibility when presented with creative wayfinding sign designs.  Participants will benefit from hearing how other communities have worked within and beyond the MUTCD to achieve compelling wayfinding systems that reflect community character and values.

Participants attending this session will develop knowledge of:

-The potential pitfalls and best practices for wayfinding related to planning, placement, destination selection, and design.   Standards and guidance within the MUTCD related to community wayfinding systems including specific language which may be referenced to advance creative wayfinding solutions.

-How public agencies have successfully explored the limits of the standards to achieve creative wayfinding systems without jeopardizing their eligibility for federal funding resources.

Critical tools participants will gain include: 

-The ability to solve challenges related to their local wayfindingprojects. 

-Testing best practices and applying the standards and guidance from the MUTCD to their local wayfinding system. 

-Case study examples where other agencies and organizations have successfully negotiated for creative sign elements while retaining their eligibility for federal funding sources. 

Participants will be encouraged to share their own successes and challenges related to wayfinding as well as seek advice on challenges or opportunities related to trail wayfinding. Topics to be described include: wayfinding components and design features, placement planning, destination prioritization, and tools for working with stakeholders. 


Katie Lloyd

Invited Speaker

Katie Lloyd has extensive experience with public engagement, community design, and public art projects from conception to completion. She has experience working collaboratively with designers and engineers to produce planning and construction documents for land development, roadway, trail/greenway, and site design projects. Read More

Jennifer Baldwin

Invited Speaker

Jennifer has over twelve years of multi-modal transportation planning experience in both the public and private sector. Having managed bicycle and pedestrian programs at both the state and local level, she brings a unique perspective to comprehensive master planning, public outreach, and project implementation. Read More

Contact Info

Benjamin Howell,