Master Plan > Physical Planning Elements > Primary Planning Issues >

Circulation and Wayfinding

An overarching issue was the concept of wayfinding, or the ability to navigate and fi nd a destination easily and logically. It is inevitable that users of a new, unfamiliar space will encounter navigational challenges. However, participants in the initial planning sessions stated their concern regarding the overwhelming number of visitors and prospective students who currently are unable to fi nd a particular building or location within the campus. Non-campus residents described the campus as a maze of sorts, which could be penetrated for specific events at large venues like the Weidner Center or Kress Events Center, but which was otherwise un-navigable.

Directing visitors from the surrounding network of roadways to the campus boundary is the first challenge in the sequence of arrival to campus. By removing or de-emphasizing signage at secondary access points and enhancing the emphasis of Main Entrance Drive as the primary entrance to campus, visitors perceive a singular “front door” into the campus. The focus of this approach is on first time and infrequent visitors; familiar campus users are encouraged to continue to use the secondary entrance points to and from campus.

The Master Plan uses the concept of the Inner Loop Road to address vehicular circulation and wayfinding within the campus boundaries. This circulation system, used primarily by visitors, emergency, and service vehicles, is intended to be a low-speed access road for travel to specific destinations. It allows users to maintain visual contact with the campus core and academic buildings, while navigating to their end location. Arterial roads intersect the Inner Loop Road at t-intersections, with a choice of right or left turns.

Pedestrian circulation uses the existing infrastructure of pedestrian walkways, maintains and continues pedestrian concourse connections to future buildings, and creates a finer mesh of sidewalk networks within the housing village. A Main Street-like pedestrian corridor between the housing village and campus core is also outlined in the Master Plan. Pedestrian/vehicular conflicts can be minimized by pavement markings, raised cross walks, and signage.

Subtle wayfinding devices can be used to guide pedestrians through the campus. Varying landscape character near particular buildings or in certain areas can create definition and differentiation of space. Lantern-like architectural features guide pedestrians to specific buildings, particularly to building entrance/exit points and can be added to existing buildings or incorporated into new building projects. Some of these lantern-like beacons may be seen from the Inner Loop Road, similarly guiding the vehicular visitor to a destination.

Existing Signage

Existing Signage

An example of a wayfinding tool on the UW-Green Bay campus.

University Union Entry Feature

University Union Entry Feature

An example of a lantern-like beacon on University Union is effective because of its location at a major entry point to the building. Transparent materials give it a beacon-like character at night and the size and form dominates over the other architectural elements of the building.

MAC Hall Stairwell Feature

MAC Hall Stairwell Feature

A smaller but effective lantern-like beacon on the east facade of MAC Hall is achieved by the design of a stairwell on the right side of the entryway to the Winter Garden.

Master Plan Vehicular Circulation

Master Plan Vehicular Circulation

The primary mechanism of circulation and wayfinding in the Master Plan is the Inner Loop Road which allows visitor, service, and emergency vehicle traffic to navigate to specific destinations while remaining oriented with the campus core buildings through continued visual contact.