GateWay Community College
GateWay Community College
environmental graphic design, wayfinding & signage design
Responsive Design Solutions for Changing Environments
Change happens. Sometimes it happens in incremental steps too, but at Thinking Caps Design all change is good. Our experienced team anticipates it, providing clients with graphic solutions that evolve as their environment changes with time.
By developing a master plan that anticipated growth and structured an appropriate hierarchy for its signage program, GWCC was able to improve the campus experience with smart, integrated information and brand presentation.
Take for example, the progression of work at GateWay Community College (GWCC) – a campus of the top-rated Maricopa Community College District. Voters passed a bond initiative to fund the district’s expansion. Two new buildings were approved at GWCC; a Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation (CEI) and a 120,000 SF Integrated Education Building (IEB). SmithGroupJJR was awarded architectural design of these new projects and they chose to team with Thinking Caps Design.
We dove in, crafting a master plan for the campus as our first assignment. Established in 1987, GWCC faced challenges not unlike other community colleges that grow in fits and starts as funding is available. Legacy directional and wayfinding systems existed but the organizational hierarchy was not consistent and re-tooling was needed. The team responded with an integrated master plan and schematic designs establishing the arrangement and overall appearance of future signage. GWCC was primed to enhance the collegiate experience with consistent presentation and messaging across the campus. Thinking Caps Design then implemented the new plan for the CEI and IEB projects underway.
Once the dust settled on the new construction, GWCC moved to a second phase of development – implementing the masterplan with updates to monuments, directories, traffic and parking lot directionals, and building identifiers. Thinking Caps Design teamed with Fucello Architects to facilitate the project and bring the campus into alignment with the master plan. A forward-looking aspect of the project was to provide GWCC’s in-house graphics department with templates and tools that would support future updates of the sign program cost-effectively.
Yes, change happens, but change brings opportunity too. By developing a master plan that anticipated growth and structured an appropriate hierarchy for its signage program, GWCC was able to confidently implement a multi-phased, multi-year initiative to improve the campus experience with smart, integrated information management and brand presentation.
CLIENT – GateWay Community College, Maricopa Community College District, Phoenix, Arizona
DESIGN TEAM – SmithgroupJJR, Fucello Architects, Thinking Caps Design
SCOPE – Masterplan Signage Program, Programming, Schematic and Design Development, Design Intent Documentation, Construction Administration
START DATE – December 2012
COMPLETION DATE – August 2013 Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation (CEI) and Integrated Education (IE) Building, October 2014 Campus Master Plan Implementation
“The Thinking Caps Design team does an excellent job of balancing creativity and appropriateness. Julie and her team are very passionate about the work they do and present solutions that honor the soul of the project. They are without a doubt a pleasure to work with.”
Eddie Garcia, SmithGroupJJ Vice President, Learning Studio Leader