Downtown Beautification & Wayfinding Program
The Town of Oliver is working to develop a Downtown Beautification & Wayfinding Program aimed at improving residents and visitor experience of the downtown, improving circulation of pedestrians, cyclists and drivers, creating a sense of arrival and place, and alerting visitors and residents to the Town’s points of interest (downtown and beyond). This work builds on the Grow Oliver Economic Development Strategy.
What is beautification and wayfinding?
The GROW Oliver Strategy outlines a Downtown Beautification & Wayfinding Program as a way to pull together the many opportunities to improve the experience of residents and visitors, and animate Oliver’s downtown public realm. This may include (ideas gathered in the GROW Oliver Strategy planning process):
- Developing a Downtown Sidewalk Policy to include policies to enhance the walkability of Downtown and improve pedestrian infrastructure, and to encourage sidewalk cafes, patios and other outdoor gathering spaces.
- Piloting wine-themed or other artistic sidewalk crossings at key intersections (e.g., Fairview and Station Street).
- Establishing simple guidelines for “pop-up” activities on Downtown lots and/or storefronts, including Town-owned lots. The guidelines would permit and encourage community groups, business groups, and others to temporarily animate spaces to exhibit or perform art pieces or shows, or host temporary businesses and/or events.
- Providing additional façade improvement incentives, particularly to support painting of storefronts.
- Supporting development of new Downtown public art, such as murals, street banners, utility box painting, or other public art that could be part of a local competition or event.
- Reaching out to Indigenous artists to create art projects that celebrate the area’s Indigenous community.
Create wayfinding signage and program for Downtown area and beyond to link and direct people to local destinations and services.
Key Considerations for Beautification & Wayfinding:
- Beautification may include physical elements that enhance the experience or interest of the downtown (public art, planters, hanging baskets, etc.) but also includes actions that help maintain existing aspects of downtown, enhancements to the look and feel of the downtown, supports to business and policy and incentives to support additional activities and programing.
- Wayfinding is more than signage. Wayfinding is about the journey and experience of moving through the Town. Signage is an element of the journey.
- Good wayfinding helps create a better experience for users of the space by facilitating navigation and orientation.
- Wayfinding supports navigation and movement around a site for all of – pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles.
- Contributes to a sense of comfort and safety.
- Works for, and is inclusive to, a diverse set of users (language, age, culture, abilities).
What we’re not doing:
- Creating a development or master plan for the downtown area
- Outlining new trails, developments, parks or any other new larger infrastructure. Beautification and wayfinding ideas and recommendations will consider existing assets and trends only.
- Wayfinding isn’t strictly about signage, or regulatory signage, such as parking, speed limits etc.