The American Institute of Architects and the American Library Association have honored the new Austin Central Library with a 2018 AIA/ALA Library Building Award.
The six-story, 200,000-square-foot building, which opened in October of last year, replaced the Faulk Central Library as the flagship of the Austin library system. The library was designed by San Antonio’s Lake|Flato Architects in conjunction with Shepley Bulfinch, and it features a signage and wayfinding program created by fd2s.
In announcing the Austin Central Library as one of this year’s award winners, the AIA called it a “technologically rich hub for innovation and cultural intelligence,” and said it has “created a framework for lifelong learning that bolsters a more resilient community.” The group also highlighted the emphasis on sustainability that has put the facility on track to receive LEED Platinum certification, including its heavy use of daylighting and its extensive efforts to capture and recycle rainwater.
The library’s fd2s-developed signage and wayfinding program reflects these themes of community, technology, and sustainability. The signage program helps create a welcoming, visitor-friendly environment that draws patrons from throughout Austin. It also clarifies and promotes the building’s sustainable features, including the 150-space valet parking area for bicycles.
You can read more about the 2018 AIA/ALA Library Building Awards on the AIA website.
For more images and a detailed description of our work on this project, visit our Austin Central Library case study.
Working with fd2s, the Oklahoma Health Center recently became one of the nation’s first academic medical centers to deploy a system of overhead vehicular wayfinding signage.
Commonly seen in large, high-traffic facilities like airports and professional sports stadium complexes, these elements reflect the size of the health campus and the complexity of its layout. The 325-acre Oklahoma Health Center campus includes 21 different member institutions with more than 17,500 employees.
The campus is home to the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, as well as a major U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs hospital, a children’s hospital, and a growing biotechnology research campus.
Visitors encounter the signs as they approach the campus on North Lincoln Boulevard. The signs sort them onto the best approach for their ultimate destination, and then smaller-scale vehicular wayfinding signage directs them to the most appropriate parking lot, valet station, or drop-off location.
A lack of clearly articulated entry thresholds for the sprawling campus – as well as the wide range of possible destinations – make these over-the-roadway signs a critical component of the wayfinding program. They also play an important role in helping to define the area as a distinct medical and technology district within the city. Obtaining permission for the signs from the Oklahoma Department of Transportation was a lengthy and highly involved process, but one that was worthwhile because of the value they deliver.
The complete Oklahoma Health Center wayfinding program also includes more-traditional vehicular and pedestrian signage, as well as a wayfinding-oriented website, printed maps, and staff training materials. Look for more details on the full project as these remaining elements are implemented later this year.
fd2s is working with Austin-based developer Peter Barlin and architecture firm Chioco Design to develop a graphic identity and wayfinding program for East Austin’s 979 Springdale project.
This eclectic mixed-use development is reinventing a former industrial facility at the intersection of Springdale Road and Airport Boulevard. It has grown quickly in popularity and has become a focal point for sports, entertainment, and culture in the neighborhood. Its tenants include the Austin Bouldering Project climbing gym, the Friends and Allies brewery and taproom, the Austin Eastciders Collaboratory, Ground Floor Theater, the Springdale Station event space, and the headquarters of digital sports broadcaster FloSports.
In addition to creating a graphic identity that conveys the diverse nature of the project’s tenants and its distinctive architecture, we will also be developing a site-wide wayfinding strategy and corresponding system of environmental graphics.
Wayfinding elements will focus on directing vehicles from entry points on Springdale Road to multiple parking areas spread across the large site. The design of the signage will capture the aesthetic of the repurposed industrial materials that the architects have used to give the project its unique character.
We recently added three new wayfinding engagements to the list of projects we are currently working on for major institutions and cultural facilities across the country.
The University of Kansas Health System – Indian Creek Campus
At The University of Kansas Health System’s new Indian Creek Campus in Overland Park, we are creating a comprehensive wayfinding strategy and implementing a signage program that reflects the Health System’s new brand identity. The four-level, multi-tenant Indian Creek facility will include 30 inpatient rooms, 20 pre- and post-operative rooms, and seven state-of-the-art operating rooms.
To ensure that the Health System’s new brand identity is properly implemented at other facilities, we have also developed brand signage guidelines that will be used at the organization’s more than 50 locations throughout the greater Kansas City area.
In San Antonio, we are working with the Linda Pace Foundation and Alamo Architects to design and oversee the implementation of a campus wayfinding program for Ruby City. Located in San Antonio’s King William District, Ruby City will be anchored by a new exhibition space (pictured above) designed by renowned architect Sir David Adjaye. When completed, this new space will house the extensive contemporary art collection of the late Linda Pace.
The urban campus also includes the one-acre CHRISPark and the Linda Pace Foundation’s Studio Gallery.
Dallas County Community College District – North Lake College
We have partnered with Blackbird Studio Architects to develop a campus wayfinding program for the 276-acre Central Campus of North Lake College. One of seven colleges in the Dallas County Community College District, North Lake College’s signature offerings include construction technology, logistics, and a unique pairing of the arts and technology.
Because the campus’s 11,000 full- and part-time students are all commuters, our initial focus is on off-premises wayfinding, campus edge and threshold definition, and on-site vehicular directional and parking identification signage. We are also assessing the delivery of wayfinding information in the college’s online tools and printed materials.
Austin’s new Central Library opened on October 28, and the 200,000-square-foot downtown landmark is receiving overwhelmingly positive reviews from visitors and the media. The library, which occupies a high-profile location in the Seaholm EcoDistrict near Austin’s City Hall, is being applauded for its use of technology, its generous incorporation of public spaces, and its role in shaping the surrounding urban environment.
More than eight years in the making, the project was designed as the “library of the future” by a joint venture of Lake|Flato Architects and Shepley Bulfinch, and was constructed by Hensel Phelps. Our signage and wayfinding program for the project – fabricated and installed by Capital Architectural Signs – complements the facility’s world-class architecture and places a heavy emphasis on flexibility, sustainability, and the library’s role as a community gathering place.
For more images and a detailed description of our work on the project, visit our Austin Central Library case study.
As a continuation of our longtime support for the San Antonio Food Bank, fd2s recently designed and oversaw the implementation of donor recognition and wayfinding signage for the new facilities of its branch in the nearby community of New Braunfels. Founded in 2010, and originally known as The Kitchen Table, the New Braunfels Food Bank now reaches 58,000 food-insecure individuals on a daily basis.
The donor recognition program we created for the facility recognizes corporate and individual underwriters with wall-mounted panel assemblies that display donor names alongside images of nutritious food and the faces of people served by the organization. For wayfinding, we utilized elements that match those of the parent facility in San Antonio, featuring simple forms and a bold use of the Food Bank’s red brand color.
fd2s is part of the team led by Limbacher & Godfrey Architects that is handling the restoration and rehabilitation of the historic 1940s-era Bathhouse at Barton Springs Pool. The project is part of the implementation of Limbacher & Godfrey’s previously completed Barton Springs Pool Masterplan.
We will be developing an overall signage strategy for the facility, which is located in Austin’s popular Zilker Park, and will then create the identification and wayfinding elements needed to support that strategy. We will also develop interpretive exhibits for the grounds surrounding the Bathhouse.
Completed in 1947, the Bathhouse was designated a City of Austin Landmark in 1990 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Bathhouse’s original architect, Dan Driscoll, also designed the historic bathhouse at Austin’s Deep Eddy Pool.
Image of 1947 Bathhouse opening courtesy of Austin History Center, Austin Public Library.
We’re pleased to announce that David A. Cajolet has joined fd2s as a Senior Designer. David’s experience includes work as a lead designer and project manager for a diverse range of project types, from retail and mixed-use developments to entertainment venues, healthcare facilities, and public environments.
In the eight years before joining fd2s, David operated Cajolet Design in Boston and Austin. This interdisciplinary design studio specialized in the development of communication strategies and graphics for the built environment, handling projects that included wayfinding, brand implementation, placemaking, themed environments, and donor recognition.
A longtime Boston resident before making the move to Austin, David previously worked with noted Boston-based architecture and design firm Arrowstreet Inc., as well as designer Roll Barresi & Associates. His portfolio includes work for Harvard University, the Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts, Farnsworth Art Museum, IDEO, Royal Caribbean International, the Broward Center for the Performing Arts, and Richmond CenterStage.
David’s more than 20 years in the field of experiential graphic design will enable him to contribute valuable leadership to the fd2s team as he directs our work on several new projects in the retail, cultural, and technology sectors.
Photo by Jeremy Robinson.
fd2s is working with Mobile Loaves & Fishes to create a signage and wayfinding program for the Austin nonprofit’s Community First! Village residential community.
Located in East Austin, Community First! Village provides affordable, permanent housing and a supportive community for disabled, chronically homeless individuals in Central Texas. Phase one of the project covers 27 acres and includes 240 housing units with space for 275 residents.
The community’s residences are a mix of micro-houses, trailers, and canvas-sided cottages, some designed by noted Austin architects. The development also includes a medical facility, community gardens, a blacksmithing studio, and an outdoor movie theater.
We are working with Mobile Loaves & Fishes to create a new program of building identification and wayfinding signage that will help to orient visitors and residents at Community First! Village, particularly as it grows to include a new sanctuary and hospitality center (designed by Austin’s Levy Architects). Wayfinding will also be a key concern as the community expands into an adjacent 24 acres as part of its second phase.
Deploying a project approach that we have used successfully for other nonprofit clients in the past, we are seeking ways to create a signage system that can be at least partially fabricated and installed by staff and residents, and that they can largely maintain on their own in the future. In addition to minimizing costs, this approach will also support the community’s focus on encouraging self-sufficiency and building work skills.
We are having a busy and productive first quarter of 2017, with several existing projects nearing completion and some exciting new work just getting underway. This month, we kicked off two new projects.
Moffitt Cancer Center
Nine years ago, fd2s created a wayfinding master plan for the campus of Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida. Now the institution has asked us to reevaluate their existing wayfinding assets and create a plan for any necessary updates or expansions. fd2s Principal Steven Stamper visited Tampa this month to meet with Moffitt executive leadership, identify project goals, establish a project schedule, and conduct an updated analysis of site conditions.
Swedish Medical Center
fd2s began the month by sending a team to Englewood, Colorado to conduct an experience audit at Swedish Medical Center. The team’s on-site activities are one of the first steps in our development of a new exterior wayfinding strategy for the institution, which was recently named a “Best Hospital” by U.S. News & World Report.