With the world coming to London in 2012, the biggest challenge for the wayfinding in the London Olympic Games venues was universal communication. We knew we had to create a set of graphic principles that would be flexible enough to be applied to different kinds of venue while ensuring consistently clear, inclusive and elegant signage. For it to work, it also had to be visibly different from the highly colourful look of the rest of the 2012 communication.
We devised a simple, adaptable set of principles that could be quickly tailored to the specifics of each venue. Information is black and white, primarily in the form of numerals and pictograms.
Where text is necessary we used FS Dillon; simple, compact letterforms built for clarity and economy of space, with interesting-looking, clear numerals (very important in numerical systems), and a little bit of quirk thrown in. In the temporary venues, a lot of the signs are painted directly to the walls – a clean, bold, graphic implementation. In the permanent venues, we matched the material aesthetic of the signage to that of the architecture.
The outcome is a coherent, well-integrated signage system: a unique feel to each location and usable, useful and attractive information in them all.