Thursday, May 8, 2008

Photos: Indianapolis Cultural Trail, Photo 7

See other Cultural Trail photos here.


Anonymous said...

I understand the concept of branding and naming rights. However I am concerned about the level of clutter beginning to appear on the Cultural Trail to recognize the minor donors (such as this plaque).

Anyone else?

CorrND said...

Absolutely. I talked with Jason of Circle and Squares the other night and we agreed that it's getting out of hand.

The Urbanophile said...

Well, this is just the way it works these days. Chicago's Millenium Park has every feature named after some donor or corporation, so it isn't just Indy.

To me, it is less the sponsors than the general clutter. I was disappointed to see the Cultural Trail logo plastered into every single light pole. If you need a sign to tell you you are on the Cultural Trail, then there is clearly something wrong with the design. I personally think less sign and label clutter would be a good thing.

Anonymous said...

I agree, Urbanophile; I don't have an issue with naming rights. It was the graphic on every light pole that started me thinking about visual clutter. The light standards themselves are the visual element; they are unique and should be the thing that says "you're on the Cultural Trail". The label is the "for dummies" overkill.

When I saw this picture, along with the thermoplastic street/crosswalk inlays, I hit the "clutter" barrier. Too many design elements.

While the crosswalks are a good idea, the design is not good. The trail itself has "lanes" marked with specific paving materials to separate bikers and walkers/runners. The crosswalks should continue with that color scheme instead of introducing the bright green/blue/white of the Cultural Trail logo. Again, that seems to be a "for dummies" element. The mere presence of unique crosswalks says "this is a different place".

I sincerely hope that the War Memorial Commission will not allow all the clutter on the American Legion Mall segment of the Trail.

In the Mall area, the crossings should actually be made from the trail pavers (or from poured colored concrete to match) because the bright thermoplastic colors would distract and detract from the solemn nature of the memorial spaces.

ps. My own experience in Millenium Park was that the named spaces were pretty tastefully done. Since each space (or outdoor room) offered its own experience without a unifying theme for the park, the naming elements did not rise to the level of clutter for me.

Jason said...

I can tell you that the War Memorials Commission and the DNR Historic Preservation Commission have been in talk with the Cultural Trail people, that proposals have been made, that DNR and WMC both have said that the "standard" by the Cultural Trail was inappropriate. But the designs have not been finalized and a new design from the Cultural Trail people have not been submitted for approval.

I echo all the comments on your page about the excessive clutter. But you knew that already...