Aberdeen University Library

The wayfinding strategy needed to reduce stress and guide students around the environment with minimal complications.

Aberdeen University Library first started construction in 2009. Designed by Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects it was the winner of the RIBA Awards 2013: RIBA National Award Winner on 13th June 2013. The 15,500 m² library, which provides a 21st century learning and research environment for students, university staff, visitors and the public, is a positive example of how architecture can make a difference. Since the building was put into service in September 2011, the statistics have shown a significant increase in the use of the library, and more than 700,000 visitors had entered the building this first year of operation.

Wayfinder UK undertook this project with the knowledge that Queen Elizabeth II would mark the official opening of the University of Aberdeen New Library in the coming weeks. With this in mind the team worked hard to ensure the project was managed effectively and on time for the royal visit.

Architecturally, the heart of the library is a spiralling atrium connecting all eight storeys, and as a dynamic vortex, this space contrasts the clean cut exterior profile. Therefore the internal wayfinding was completed in order to complement the entire building design. This included The Hardback Café on the Ground Floor and the ‘Break-out’ Room on Floor 7, where students can enjoy panoramic views of the city while reading. The wayfinding strategy needed to reduce stress and guide students around the environment with minimal complications.

Wayfinder UK sourced quality signage systems, which were designed to complement the contemporary environment. The signage was designed in order to match the interior décor, emphasising the contemporary design. The library is designed to meet the highest sustainable standards, minimising long term running costs and energy use. In turn, the sign system chosen was flexible and durable, offering a truly economical solution.

At the opening ceremony, the University of Aberdeen New Library was named the ‘Sir Duncan Rice Library’ in recognition of the vision, ambition and leadership of the University’s former Principal and Vice-Chancellor, Sir Duncan Rice.

University Wayfinding

In addition to the project showcased here, Wayfinder have delivered wayfinding projects to lots of other clients in this sector. Here are just a selection of them:

  • University of Aberdeen
  • University of Manchester
  • University of Sheffield
  • University of Bradford
  • CAST Technium, University Bangor
  • Arts University College Bournemouth
  • Southport College
  • Stephenson College, Leicester
  • Herriot-Watt University, Edinburgh
  • Bedford High School
  • Catmose Campus
  • Rotunda Community College
  • St Joseph’s High School, Wrexham
  • Philip High School
  • Brampton Academy
  • Seevic College
  • Tottington High School

Our Wayfinding Process

This website is designed to offer only general information, therefore the content does not explain the important technical details involved in the wayfinding process.

Such information is restricted to client briefings, in order to protect our intellectual property. As this information is vital to your understanding of our services and the many benefits, we are more than happy to explain in detail, either over the telephone or face to face.

To find out more, please email enquiries@wayfinding.co.uk to arrange a free, no obligation telephone conversation with one of our senior consultants.