Metro considering new signage, map

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Metro considering new signage, map

Postby JDC » Thu Jul 10, 2014 9:42 am

Per a post on GGW, Metro made a presentation to the Riders Advisory Council (RAC) in which it discussed two very radical changes.

First, Metro is considering changing station signage (i.e. all of the signage it just changed for Silver Line phase 1) to indicate the direction of travel (northbound, southbound, etc).

Second, Metro is considering a new system map (again just revised for Silver Line) to show dots for each station that multiple lines serve, versus the current use of the dot with white whiskers.

The GGW post is here: http://greatergreaterwashington.org/post/23534/metro-considers-labeling-trains-as-northbound-southbound-etc-as-part-of-new-sign-concept/.

The presentation to RAC is here: http://wmata.com/about_metro/riders_advisory_council/minutes/docs/RAC%20Signage%20Presentation,%202014-07-09.pdf.
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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby asdf » Thu Jul 10, 2014 11:24 am

this is the most god awful garbage signage I've ever seen ... eastbound/westbound? because the metro lines are all straight right??!?!?! /s

the excessive amounts of circles also is very distracting and makes thing very hard to see
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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby MACTRAXX » Thu Jul 10, 2014 5:47 pm

Everyone: Interesting changes proposed for Metro's signs and maps...

I think it is a good idea to show each route with its station stops marked as one of the proposed maps has...

What Metro should NOT do is even consider the use of the terms "Inbound" and "Outbound" overused by Boston's MBTA...The trouble with using
these terms on routes that go through central DC is that at some point "Inbound" becomes "Outbound" which could confuse riders even more and
on a personal thought what is "Inbound" to one rider can be "Outbound" to another...I dislike these terms and will not use them myself...

Actual directions - which I would prefer - may be problematic because of the way some of Metro's routes change direction enroute and
by using the actual destinations that probably would be the best way to not confuse riders...The best example of these changes is the Red Line
which is basically a giant letter "U"...

Adding letter designations to the color dots on the pylons and signage is another interesting change - "RED" should be used for that line and
two-letter designations (shown) for the other routes..."SL" for the new Silver Line is a good idea...

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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby Sand Box John » Thu Jul 10, 2014 11:14 pm

The is what posted at Greater Greater Washington.

"I have no problem with the East, West, North, South as it follows the Kelly Johnson KISS (Keep It Simple Stuped) rule,

Operationally the tracks are also labeled inbound and outbound with Metro Center, Red, Blue, Orange and Silver and Gallery Place Green and Yellow being the center points of the routes."


"As to the map, I say stick with the single circle, narrow the line widths so the single circle touches all 3 lines where applicable and the same size circle is bigger then the width of the single lines."

I think Inbound and Outbound can work provided there is an emphasis place on Metro Center and Galley Place as being the geographic centers of the lines mentioned above.

As to MACTRAXX issue over using East, West, North, South. New Carrollton and Vienna are East and West of each other' Largo and Springfield-Franconia, Largo and Wiehle - Reston are as well. Branch Avenue and Greenbelt are North and South of each other, Greenbelt and Springfield-Franconia are as well. Now the issue with the Red line, railroads in this country from the day the first foot of track was laid have been labeled East, West or North, South. To my knowledge all of the railroads use either East, West or North, South not both regardless of the actual compass direction of the right of way. Being that Metro Center is the geographic center of the railroad (mile post zero) and WMATA has chosen to use both East, West and North, South it would make sense to me to label the Red line East, West.

One of the things I noticed in the horizontal wall mounted strip map example in the Riders' Advisory Council presentation is the strip map at ever platform for a given line or lines will be the same with the color of the station name inverted for the name of station the map is displayed in. I don't like that, I think the strip map should only display the names of the stations the platform normally serves. I also noticed there were no examples of a vertical pylon strip map. Something that I believe should retained as their text size draws people seeking way finding information out of the path of passenger moving along the platforms.
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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby DiscoveryAnalysis » Sat Jul 12, 2014 1:36 pm

Sand Box John wrote:The is what posted at Greater Greater Washington.

"I have no problem with the East, West, North, South as it follows the Kelly Johnson KISS (Keep It Simple Stuped) rule,

Operationally the tracks are also labeled inbound and outbound with Metro Center, Red, Blue, Orange and Silver and Gallery Place Green and Yellow being the center points of the routes."


"As to the map, I say stick with the single circle, narrow the line widths so the single circle touches all 3 lines where applicable and the same size circle is bigger then the width of the single lines."

I think Inbound and Outbound can work provided there is an emphasis place on Metro Center and Galley Place as being the geographic centers of the lines mentioned above.

As to MACTRAXX issue over using East, West, North, South. New Carrollton and Vienna are East and West of each other' Largo and Springfield-Franconia, Largo and Wiehle - Reston are as well. Branch Avenue and Greenbelt are North and South of each other, Greenbelt and Springfield-Franconia are as well. Now the issue with the Red line, railroads in this country from the day the first foot of track was laid have been labeled East, West or North, South. To my knowledge all of the railroads use either East, West or North, South not both regardless of the actual compass direction of the right of way. Being that Metro Center is the geographic center of the railroad (mile post zero) and WMATA has chosen to use both East, West and North, South it would make sense to me to label the Red line East, West.

One of the things I noticed in the horizontal wall mounted strip map example in the Riders' Advisory Council presentation is the strip map at ever platform for a given line or lines will be the same with the color of the station name inverted for the name of station the map is displayed in. I don't like that, I think the strip map should only display the names of the stations the platform normally serves. I also noticed there were no examples of a vertical pylon strip map. Something that I believe should retained as their text size draws people seeking way finding information out of the path of passenger moving along the platforms.



I also would rather see Inbound/Outbound used. The whole directional plan would confuse occasional riders even more. For example to give directions from Crystal City to Smithsonian. " Take an inbound BL train to Smithsonian or inbound YL to L'Enfant & transfer to an inbound train for one stop to Smithsonian."

As for the directional signs create a hybrid design, add inbound & outbound along with the terminal stations, this would also address the concern at Metro Center & Gallery Place by labeling all trains as Outbound along with the terminal. Example would be Outbound/ Glenmont or Outbound/ Reston, Franconia, & Vienna
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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby MACTRAXX » Sat Jul 12, 2014 3:29 pm

DiscoveryAnalysis wrote:
Sand Box John wrote:The is what posted at Greater Greater Washington.

"I have no problem with the East, West, North, South as it follows the Kelly Johnson KISS (Keep It Simple Stuped) rule,

Operationally the tracks are also labeled inbound and outbound with Metro Center, Red, Blue, Orange and Silver and Gallery Place Green and Yellow being the center points of the routes."


"As to the map, I say stick with the single circle, narrow the line widths so the single circle touches all 3 lines where applicable and the same size circle is bigger then the width of the single lines."

I think Inbound and Outbound can work provided there is an emphasis place on Metro Center and Galley Place as being the geographic centers of the lines mentioned above.

As to MACTRAXX issue over using East, West, North, South. New Carrollton and Vienna are East and West of each other' Largo and Springfield-Franconia, Largo and Wiehle - Reston are as well. Branch Avenue and Greenbelt are North and South of each other, Greenbelt and Springfield-Franconia are as well. Now the issue with the Red line, railroads in this country from the day the first foot of track was laid have been labeled East, West or North, South. To my knowledge all of the railroads use either East, West or North, South not both regardless of the actual compass direction of the right of way. Being that Metro Center is the geographic center of the railroad (mile post zero) and WMATA has chosen to use both East, West and North, South it would make sense to me to label the Red line East, West.

One of the things I noticed in the horizontal wall mounted strip map example in the Riders' Advisory Council presentation is the strip map at ever platform for a given line or lines will be the same with the color of the station name inverted for the name of station the map is displayed in. I don't like that, I think the strip map should only display the names of the stations the platform normally serves. I also noticed there were no examples of a vertical pylon strip map. Something that I believe should retained as their text size draws people seeking way finding information out of the path of passenger moving along the platforms.



I also would rather see Inbound/Outbound used. The whole directional plan would confuse occasional riders even more. For example to give directions from Crystal City to Smithsonian. " Take an inbound BL train to Smithsonian or inbound YL to L'Enfant & transfer to an inbound train for one stop to Smithsonian."

As for the directional signs create a hybrid design, add inbound & outbound along with the terminal stations, this would also address the concern at Metro Center & Gallery Place by labeling all trains as Outbound along with the terminal. Example would be Outbound/ Glenmont or Outbound/ Reston, Franconia, & Vienna


DA: I totally disagree here - I would rather see signs NOT using the terms Inbound and Outbound...

I feel that those terms should be only used on stub-end lines that have a terminal in a central or downtown area and in my opinion
you further confuse riders by using those terms because at some point Inbound has to become Outbound...

With major parts of Metro's trunk lines downtown using Inbound and Outbound becomes even more of a problem and using compass
directions - even though geographically it could be problematic - would literally make more sense...

I agree with SBJ's thought of KISS - keeping it as simple as possible...

Directional Sign Examples - Red Line at Bethesda:
<GROSVENOR and SHADY GROVE
GLENMONT VIA DOWNTOWN (or Metro Center)>

Blue Line at Addison Road:
<FRANCONIA-SPRINGFIELD VIA DOWNTOWN (or Metro Center)
LARGO TOWN CENTER>

Hopefully Metro does not make the mistake of using Inbound and Outbound...

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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby JDC » Sat Jul 12, 2014 3:48 pm

MACTRAXX wrote:
DA: I totally disagree here - I would rather see signs NOT using the terms Inbound and Outbound...

I feel that those terms should be only used on stub-end lines that have a terminal in a central or downtown area and in my opinion
you further confuse riders by using those terms because at some point Inbound has to become Outbound...

With major parts of Metro's trunk lines downtown using Inbound and Outbound becomes even more of a problem and using compass
directions - even though geographically it could be problematic - would literally make more sense...

I agree with SBJ's thought of KISS - keeping it as simple as possible...

Directional Sign Examples - Red Line at Bethesda:
<GROSVENOR and SHADY GROVE
GLENMONT VIA DOWNTOWN (or Metro Center)>

Blue Line at Addison Road:
<FRANCONIA-SPRINGFIELD VIA DOWNTOWN (or Metro Center)
LARGO TOWN CENTER>

Hopefully Metro does not make the mistake of using Inbound and Outbound...

MACTRAXX


I concur. I think 'inbound' or 'outbound' only make sense for 'stub' lines. Presumably when the Metro system was designed, people thought about this issue. And the decision they made to use the current nomenclature (Red Line to Shady Grove, etc) works and has worked well for decades. Now, I do like the suggestion of more "via" in station signage for tourists, such as shown at National Airport and Gallery Place. Still, someone elsewhere made the point that with all of the mobile devices people use nowadays, less and less people actually look at the signage and instead rely on what their device tells them. The key would seem to be better apps, and maybe an official app from Metro in addition to its mobile website. That could have 'dummy' directions for tourists, etc.
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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby MACTRAXX » Sat Jul 12, 2014 4:00 pm

JDC wrote:
MACTRAXX wrote:
DA: I totally disagree here - I would rather see signs NOT using the terms Inbound and Outbound...

I feel that those terms should be only used on stub-end lines that have a terminal in a central or downtown area and in my opinion
you further confuse riders by using those terms because at some point Inbound has to become Outbound...

With major parts of Metro's trunk lines downtown using Inbound and Outbound becomes even more of a problem and using compass
directions - even though geographically it could be problematic - would literally make more sense...

I agree with SBJ's thought of KISS - keeping it as simple as possible...

Directional Sign Examples - Red Line at Bethesda:
<GROSVENOR and SHADY GROVE
GLENMONT VIA DOWNTOWN (or Metro Center)>

Blue Line at Addison Road:
<FRANCONIA-SPRINGFIELD VIA DOWNTOWN (or Metro Center)
LARGO TOWN CENTER>

Hopefully Metro does not make the mistake of using Inbound and Outbound...

MACTRAXX


I concur. I think 'inbound' or 'outbound' only make sense for 'stub' lines. Presumably when the Metro system was designed, people thought about this issue. And the decision they made to use the current nomenclature (Red Line to Shady Grove, etc) works and has worked well for decades. Now, I do like the suggestion of more "via" in station signage for tourists, such as shown at National Airport and Gallery Place. Still, someone elsewhere made the point that with all of the mobile devices people use nowadays, less and less people actually look at the signage and instead rely on what their device tells them. The key would seem to be better apps, and maybe an official app from Metro in addition to its mobile website. That could have 'dummy' directions for tourists, etc.


JDC: In the topic of signs I totally agree with you here but I am one that is not sold whatsoever on "apps"...But realizing that younger people use
these options it does make sense to have them and I will add this thought: How much effort does it take to pay attention to posted signs while using
the Metro?

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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby Sand Box John » Sat Jul 12, 2014 9:21 pm

Inbound and Outbound should work with no problems as long as WMATA emphasizes that Metro Center and Gallery Place are the stations where the direction changes, as those 2 stations are the geographic centers of the lines that pass through them. To eliminate any possible confusion as to which way inbound or outbound is in Metro Center and Gallery Place simply don't display Inbound or Outbound on any of the platform way finding signs. Let the passenger determine the direction he or she need to go to get to their desired destination.

But the issue over using Inbound or Outbound instead of Northbound Southbound, Eastbound and Westbound appears to be academic as WMATA makes no mention of Inbound or Outbound in their signage change presentation.
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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby jkovach » Sun Jul 13, 2014 2:29 pm

I don't like the idea of directional signage... if someone is at Union Station and wants to get to Silver Spring, they would get on an "Eastbound" train that then proceeds to go north and west (but not east!) to their destination. While most of the folks on this board probably understand "railroad directions", it's a bit much to ask for tourists. I think that Inbound and Outbound are more intuitive, but "<destination> via downtown" would work best as it leaves the least room for confusion.

The NYC subway "flips" directions all the time. I get on a Manhattan-bound A train in Brooklyn, which then becomes an Uptown A train (or something similar - it's been a while) once it gets to Manhattan.

Also, what happens to the train signage - will it be changed to show directions as well, or will it continue to show destinations?
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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby Sand Box John » Sun Jul 13, 2014 4:42 pm

"jkovach"I don't like the idea of directional signage... if someone is at Union Station and wants to get to Silver Spring, they would get on an "Eastbound" train that then proceeds to go north and west (but not east!) to their destination. While most of the folks on this board probably understand "railroad directions", it's a bit much to ask for tourists. I think that Inbound and Outbound are more intuitive, but "<destination> via downtown" would work best as it leaves the least room for confusion.

US-50 runs 30 miles along a north south heading between Wye Mills and Cambridge and is signed east and west, US-29 runs roughly 45 miles along a mostly east west heading between Rosslyn and Warrenton and it is signed north south, US-301 runs 35 miles along a mostly east west heading between Bowie and Queenstown and is signed north south and it is cosigned US-50 east west to boot. I don't recall reading about anybody being confused about that signage. I could probably find a few hundred other examples around the country if I looked.

Also, what happens to the train signage - will it be changed to show directions as well, or will it continue to show destinations?

I think we can safely assume there will be no changes to the way destination are displayed on trains because there is no mention of that in the signage change presentation.
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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby jkovach » Sun Jul 13, 2014 6:55 pm

Sand Box John wrote:US-301 runs 35 miles along a mostly east west heading between Bowie and Queenstown and is signed north south and it is cosigned US-50 east west to boot.


This is true... however, highway signage also has guide cities in addition to directions (e.g. 495 West - Northern Virginia / Frederick, 495 East - Baltimore / Silver Spring). So a rough equivalent on the Metro would be "Red - Eastbound to Glenmont", which would actually work quite well, although it's a little wordy.
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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby Sand Box John » Sun Jul 13, 2014 7:25 pm

"jkovach"
This is true... however, highway signage also has guide cities in addition to directions (e.g. 495 West - Northern Virginia / Frederick, 495 East - Baltimore / Silver Spring). So a rough equivalent on the Metro would be "Red - Eastbound to Glenmont", which would actually work quite well, although it's a little wordy.


Yes most big green signs display the trail blaze city or town on them along with the compass heading, however in most cases the road goes beyond that city or town.
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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby JackRussell » Mon Jul 14, 2014 6:19 pm

With U.S. highways there is the odd-even thing going. An even numbered highway is always east-west, an odd-numbered highway is always north-south.

Not sure about state highways - at least some states follow the same convention.
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Re: Metro considering new signage, map

Postby Sand Box John » Mon Jul 14, 2014 11:56 pm

I will also note on virtually all of the overhead and most road side big green signs the compass heading is next to the route shield on top with the town or city listed below.
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