TTC Chair Adam Giambrone is promising to restore some order to our transit history. He wants the board to hire an archivist to ensure that important TTC artifacts are properly preserved and catalogued.
Not a moment too soon for design advocates keen on saving signage the TTC plans to remove as part of its station modernization program.
In particular, the dragon on the wall of the St. George station and the info pillar outside the station,both remnants of a failed sign pilot project dating back to the 90s, have caught the imagination of, among others, disabilities advocate Joe Clark
. He's launched a website campaign to save these and other signs.
He says the Paul Arthur designs, which uses pictograms, words, colours and architecture to help people find their way quickly, have proven useful to people with language barriers and poor vision. But without the $8 million needed at the time, the project was scrapped.
Clark says the New York subway-style signs the TTC seems to be leaning toward (they've been used on the Sheppard line) are not as dynamic from a design point of view.
"We need a signage system. Little bits and pieces do not a system make," he says.
Transit and public space advocate Matt Blackett says the TTC is ignoring the cultural impact it's had on our history by not creating a unique signage system.
"Signs help shape what transit users think of our subway system. A culture has been created where signage and historical preservation are not taken into consideration when redoing stations."