NORTHCOTE AQUATIC AND RECREATION CENTRE

Wayfinding
for wellbeing

When a much-loved neighbourhood aquatic centre underwent a transformation, Diadem ensured its wayfinding reflected the needs of the council and community.

Diadem prepared a wayfinding strategy and concept designs before moving into tender documentation and design guardianship during construction.

Client

Darebin City Council

Architect

Warren & Mahoney

Traditional Custodians

Wurundjeri Woiwurrung People

Photographer

Tom Roe Photography

A deep
dive

Northcote Aquatic and Recreation Centre is a state-of-the-art council-run facility in one of Melbourne’s inner-northern suburbs, committed to promoting health, wellbeing and lifelong learning.

Darebin City Council had decided to build a new centre that would not only meet the changing fitness needs of the community, but would also target net zero emissions. As a 6-star Green Star-rated building, it would set a benchmark for sustainability as an all-electric, eco-friendly swimming pool.

Diadem prepared a wayfinding strategy for the centre, followed by wayfinding designs, tender documentation and design guardianship during construction.

Diadem’s key objective at every stage was to enhance the experience for all. Rather than simply communicating information, the wayfinding needed to contribute to an easy experience for every user.

Capturing
council principles

Diadem’s wayfinding strategy directly referenced the masterplan’s guiding principles, including safety, inclusivity, environmental stewardship and community engagement.

Diadem balanced the council’s existing signage package with the natural, muted architectural fit-out designed by Warren and Mahoney.

Journey planning involved locating the council signage in and around the centre, ensuring everyone arriving (by car, bus, bike or on foot) could easily find their destination.

A cleaner
experience

One unique problem to solve through this project was how to best guide users through the changing room and showers so that they would ‘pre-rinse’ in the European style of bathing. This allows the water in the pools to be treated less, making the centre more sustainable.

Easy-to-read (and understand) signage brought this component to life and helped to educate users on the centre’s wider sustainability aims.

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