Design in the built environment
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Design blog about the built environment

Project: Centennial Park - Map design concept and research

The brief

Centennial Parklands Trust engaged JSD to redesign a series of maps for the Centennial Parklands. As a much-loved destination, the initial phase of the project involved engaging the community for feedback on the concept designs. 

Existing Map Guide

Existing Map Guide

About the survey

JSD created three map concepts for the Centennial Parklands Trust to use as the basis of consultation with the community. The survey was written to determine aspects of each concept around design evaluation and route navigation. Respondents were asked a number of questions about the concept designs, placement of legends as well as given instructions to determine the route they would use with the the park.

The online survey was sent to over 5800 database people during May/June 2016 and was open for two weeks.

Survey insights and results

  • 536 responses were received
  • Analysis provided insight into demographics such as age bracket and gender as well as awareness of Centennial park and visitor behaviour

A selection of the general insights across all maps

  • Symbolisation - the choices of symbology can make or break a map
  • Labels - these should be used sparingly to identify important aspects of the map
  • Legend - the map legend needs to be legible, not overly cluttered, and easy to understand
  • Incorporating Map Elements - making sure that all map elements are properly applied is important for providing readers with the context of the map

Insights about the favoured concept

  • One of the concepts was overwhelmingly the preferred option with 45% of respondents favouring this concept
  • Colour scheme and contrast (76% agree)
  • Key is easy to understand and use (77% agree)
  • Make Destination and Landmark Icons easy to find (72% agree)
  • Right amount of detail (not too much or too little) to help navigate the Park (72% agree)
  • Fonts must be large enough and easy to read (67% agree)

Next steps

Now the concept has been selected, JSD is currently designing the new map guide.

JSD Research tip

Don’t be scared to go to your stakeholders, customers and database to get feedback on your design projects. While this process was specific for a map project, the process can be replicated and incredibly useful for a range of other design projects such as brand redesign, digital and wayfinding. The small investment at this stage may save you a larger amount in the long run and help build customer buy-in.