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Penn Medicine; Identity and Wayfinding

The University of Pennsylvania’s Health System, Penn Medicine, provides medical education, research, and patient healthcare services via three Philadelphia hospitals, regional outpatient centers, and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

With the new Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine by Rafael Viñoly Architects anchoring an expanded Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania complex, the healthcare system now called Penn Medicine recognized the potential danger of creating multiple perceptions of service in the new and old facilities. A wayfinding master plan completed by ex;it identified current and anticipated problems and created methodology for future wayfinding. Developing a signage program based on the master plan required branding the hospital, Perelman Center, and the University of Pennsylvania as independent, yet interconnected, components of Penn Medicine.

ex;it created an interior and exterior signage program with new brand standards for Penn Medicine environments. ex;it took a three-component approach to design, using Penn Medicine’s three tenets of education, research, and medicine as guides. Signs feature the university shield to reference the university connection; a blue vertical element that carries forth the existing Penn Medicine brand color, and a new red vertical element that indicates the building/entity name. Flexibility of the red element allows the signage standard to be used at any Penn Medicine location. Interior signage incorporates the same colors and university shield, in a more neutral format, referencing interior signage at other Penn facilities. To aid visitor wayfinding, ex;it used the Perelman Center as the keystone of a new campus navigation system, creating East, West, and South portals from the center’s lobby that establish a cognitive map of campus via direction and are supported by new signage.

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