Parramatta Square is one of the most extensive urban renewal projects in the country and the largest commercial property project in Australia. The 3.5-hectare city style precinct will transform the heart of Parramatta, delivering four commercial towers, as well as a vibrant and cosmopolitan lifestyle, with retail and hospitality designed to cement Parramatta’s standing as a true secondary CBD.
With no identity, Urbanite’s job was to create a cohesive visual language and signage system for this exciting precinct to unite its widespread and disparate components and accommodate for its growth.
The job was twofold: a strong visual identity was needed as a foundation across the entire precinct, while also celebrating Walker’s commitment to the creation of the precinct. In addition, a simple and sophisticated signage system was required to unite the family of towers, while also allowing each one to shine as an individual landmark with characteristics that reflected their unique architecture and design.
A project of this scale and complexity called for extensive and close collaboration with the project teams and architects of the numerous buildings and was subject to a considerable wayfinding strategy. Through an analysis of each of the buildings and public spaces, we were able to deliver successful signage outcomes across the tower base building, cark park (which required future connection to 6 and 8 Parramatta Square), end of trip facilities and the precinct, along with the connections to key infrastructure such as Parramatta Station and bus interchange.
We used patterns inspired by the geometric forms of the respective towers to differentiate between the buildings. The pattern for 4 Parramatta Square was inspired by the V-columns that support the podium of the building and was applied as an etched pattern to prominent totem signage in the lobby. We added subtle organic curves to the totems as well as other select signage, softening the sign forms and lightening their dominance within the space.
Each piece of wayfinding was positioned with careful consideration of architectural datum heights and features to truly create signage which was integrated with the fabric of the building.
Our creative approach was highly typography driven. A contemporary, stylised feature font and a simple supporting font were used throughout and a type-based building name, which largely acted in lieu of a building brand. The simple sophistication of a typography-based system unites this extensive commercial precinct and provides a cohesive foundation for growth.
We also developed a bespoke suite of pictograms for the project, which come to life in functional signs, wall graphics and within the end of trip facility. This gave us a rich opportunity to use a more playful, expressive side of the suite, while maintaining a polished monotone execution. We super scaled the pictograms to create bold, exuberant statements that also deliver a strong communicative punch.
The wayfinding design unites the family of towers and precinct with an overarching visual identity, while also allowing each building to shine as an individual landmark with signage and graphics characteristics that reflect their unique architecture and design.