Finding Your Way Around
The purpose of the online survey is educational, and part of original research and study leading to a dissertation in a master’s level program. The aim of this questionnaire is to gather feedback on the experiences of finding your way around (“Wayfinding”) particularly related to architectural materials selected for the places visited on a daily basis. Way-finding is a term promoted by the late US city planner Kevin Lynch, in his book Image of the City, published in 1960. The term is now widely used in the language of urban and communication planning. Many scientifc, and qualitative design research studies have been underway related to Wayfinding in built contexts. Lynch’s application expressed the processes involved for orientation within, and navigation of, communities and cities.
Wayfinding may depend on how we physically and cognitively interact with places using perceptual, visual, tactile, auditory and olfactory (sensory) cues for navigating both built (and virtual environments). Architectural materials (e.g. brick, marble, glass) among many other physical building elements may play a key role, as these components can contribute to creating ‘internal maps’ of how best to make our way during daily activities or finding our way around new places. Of particular interest to the study is the advanced age population, as well as those with disabilities that may be particularly challenged by our built environments.
How can we evolve design practice to be more inclusive of the full range and diversity of our citizens? This study on wayfinding aims to identify some challenges and opportunities for inclusion related to the types of places we build, including the materials we select for those environments.The online survey is one tool used to gather information from various groups of participants on wayfinding. We hope you volunteer to participate in providing information about your own wayfinding experiences!
Cheryl Giraudy, OAA MRAIC