National Mall & Memorial Parks Wayfinding
National Park Service
Wayne Hunt (principal in charge); Katie Varrati, In Sung Kim, Dinnis Lee, Kris Helmick, Christina Allen, Steve Hernandez (designers)
Color-Ad Signs and Exhibits
The all-new wayfinding signage program for the National Mall in Washington, D.C., is comprised of more than 500 signs and directory maps.
Hunt Design created a respectful and organized program that welcomes visitors and directs them to more than 50 museums, monuments, and memorials within America’s most cherished place of remembrance and celebration. The 400-acre site serves more than 25 million visitors annually. Hunt Design was charged with creating a system that would be permanent and reflective of the stature of the site but not intrusive or distracting from the monuments themselves. The system also needed to be updatable and incorporate a system of pictograms that illustrate and reinforce destinations. The review process for the project was extensive, including the National Park Service, the Trust for the National Mall, the Architect of the Capitol, the Downtown DC Business Improvement District, the Smithsonian, the National Gallery, the National Capitol Planning Commission, and the presidential-appointed Commission on Fine Arts.
The system features porcelain pylon sign towers in two sizes: 9- by 6-foot and 5-foot, both made of porcelain enamel panels over granite bases, as well as 60 all-new visitor-friendly maps in three sizes.
“Having experienced this program in person, the system itself seemed nearly invisible—letting me focus on the various monuments—yet it provided exactly the right information when needed. The beauty of this system is in its purity and simplicity, shown through incredible attention to detail, perfect pylon placement, superb execution, and clarity of iconography.”