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Terminal 105 tinations such as: arrival gate, customs, baggage claim, security checkpoint, and departure gate. Domestic passengers experience similar wayfinding tasks minus customs. For most connections, baggage is automatically transferred to the connecting flight. However passengers making a con- nection from an international flight are frequently required to claim their bags before making their connection. Maps are very useful in orienting passengers within a terminal, especially when they need to walk long distances, change levels, or change buildings or terminals. 6.2.3 Meeting Point for Non-travelling Visitors Arriving passengers are frequently greeted by friends or relatives in the terminal. During peak hours these airport visitors can create a lot of congestion if they get lost within the terminal. Air- ports can have multiple exits so the meeter/greeter area for arriving passengers should be clearly marked on signs and directory maps. 6.2.4 Visibility Index (VI) In order to assess the need for signs, designers should consider conducting a line of sight analy- sis. The simplest navigation task occurs when the destination is visible from the origin. A sight line analysis is an important tool that can be applied to determine the visibility of terminal as a whole or of its subsystems and components. Changes in layout or signage can be evaluated in terms of their visibility. The Visibility Index (VI) is a common quantitative measure used to eval- uate the ease of orientation and wayfinding within a facility. The Visibility Index is established based on the availability of sight lines between key nodes within a facility57,58,59,60. For an airport terminal there are many destinations for each origin, and a destination with many sight lines becomes very visible. The more visible the various origins and destinations are, the more the users are oriented. Similarly, the Visibility Index can be calculated for a chain of nodes, such as the path originating from the curb to aircraft. For a terminal to be 100% visible every destination would have to be visible from every origin. Where sight lines are not available, passengers require other devices that provide orientation information, such as signs, maps, and other visual cues. 6.3 Signs and Wayfinding 6.3.1 Departures and Arrivals Sequence A comprehensive signage program for the terminal area begins the moment a passenger enters the building. This can be either a departing, arriving terminating, or an arriving connecting pas- senger. To provide an overview of the elements to consider when planning a wayfinding system for the terminal, the following represents a checklist for the primary signs: From Ticketing · Directional signs--overhead and/or free standing to the gate. · Airport directories--for orientation and information. · MUFIDs--for flight and gate information. Security Checkpoint · Identification of the checkpoint. · Informational. · Regulatory (TSA-required signs. See Chapter 8.) Gate Area · Directional signs--overhead or free standing to the gate. · Airport directories--for orientation and information.
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106 Wayfinding and Signing Guidelines for Airport Terminals and Landside Figure 6.8. Departure circulation tree. · MUFIDs--for flight and gate information. · Gate identification. Departing passengers can access a terminal by one of several means: passenger drop-off, self- park, airport or hotel shuttle, commercial vehicle, and mass transit. For passengers checking bags or without a boarding pass, step one is to provide necessary wayfinding to the ticketing level or area. The departure circulation tree (Figure 6.8) is a generic visual representation of this wayfinding checklist. Using this information as a model, a circulation tree can be developed for any airport to track the connectivity of passenger movements and identify the decision points. Similar checklists and circulation trees can be developed to track the connectivity and decision points for an arriving terminating passenger or an arriving connecting passenger. 6.3.2 Transit--Internal Rail System vs. External In the last two decades there has been a revolution in rail transit at airports. A number of air- ports have developed train links from the airport to downtowns on top of developing rail tran- sit to connecting airport terminals and parking. A difficulty has developed with the rise of these transit systems: the confusion between internal and external rail systems. This problem exists on the terminal landside or non-secure area. In the follow up interviews with wayfinding design professionals they were all asked what is one of the most problematic wayfinding areas and almost every designer cited the transit connec- tions. The case in point is demonstrated at Newark International Airport where this difficulty is most visible. The external transportation system run by the New Jersey Department of Transportation and Amtrak is connected to the airport by the AirTrain, an internal monorail system. The wayfinding system does not properly explain the difference between the internal AirTrain and the external transit system, creating confusion among passengers that perceive it as one system. The AirTrain
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Terminal 107 Figures 6.9. Examples of AirTrain information at EWR. is branded in some applications and generic on other signs and explained on some signs and not on others (Figure 6.9). The on-airport AirTrain makes frequent stops around the airport--including the airline termi- nals, parking lots, hotel shuttle areas and rental car facilities (Figure 6.10). Also, every AirTrain ride around the airport is free. The off-airport AirTrain Newark provides easy connections to and from NJ TRANSIT and Amtrak through one gateway--Newark Liberty International Airport Station. Many airport designers see the solution in differentiation. This can be accomplished by ensur- ing that rail transit to the city looks like it is part of an overarching urban system; the internal air- port transportation system is integrated into the overall airport wayfinding, rather than looking like a unique entity. At Boston Logan International Airport, the transportation system from the airport to the city is called the Silver Line, similar to the color structure of other transit links to the city. This tran- sit link is portrayed in maps at the same time. Meanwhile the internal transit system, the Logan shuttle, is clearly linked with the wayfinding system internal to the airport. Both transit systems use buses as the means of transport. The differing graphic identity and wayfinding systems are what keep the two systems from being confused with each other.
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108 Wayfinding and Signing Guidelines for Airport Terminals and Landside Figure 6.10. Examples of AirTrain Map at EWR. On the airside or secure area of the airport several airports have chosen to brand their trains that serve as an APM system between terminals, concourses, and gates. The odds of these trains being confused with any train service on the landside is minimized because only ticketed passen- gers have access to these trains. However, there is a potential for confusion for unfamiliar passengers who may not understand what this branded service is. Therefore, the signing for these types of trains can require additional information such as the examples show in Figures 6.11a and 6.11b. 6.3.3 Security Screening Checkpoints (SSCP) Since 9/11 security checkpoints have become in some people's eyes a destination that should be part of the wayfinding system. However, security checkpoints can be one of the more stress- ful aspects of the passenger experience. Each airport layout is different but typically all that is necessary is simple identification that is not overly exaggerated. Areas like security and customs are operated by the TSA (Transportation and Security Admin- istration) and CBP (Customs and Border Protection) respectively. Both areas are controlled sep- arately from the airport and can create breaks in the wayfinding continuity. Therefore, the wayfinding to and through the security checkpoints should focus on directing passengers to the gates located past security. Minimizing the attention given to security checkpoints will help com- bat the negative perceptions associated with why they are there as well as the process itself.