Mon, Jun 20, 2011 - Page 2 News List

Taoyuan international airport to get new signs

GIVE ME A SIGN:Airport officials promise that the new signs will actually point travelers in the right direction, as well as being consistent in style and legible from a distance

By Shelley Shan  /  Staff Reporter

Travelers will probably not get lost as easily at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport anymore because the Taoyuan International Airport (TIA) Corp is in the process of replacing the signs at its first and second terminals with ones with clearer directions.

TIA president Samuel Lin (林鵬良) said the airport company has listed sign improvement as one of its most important projects this year. He said the current airport signs lack consistency in style. Some of them have pointed flight passengers in the wrong direction because they were placed in inappropriate locations, he said.

When the government began to renovate the first terminal in 2009, Lin said that the company hoped to simultaneously push for more user-friendly signs with consistent designs.

To facilitate replacing the signs, Lin said that the company decided to learn from Hong Kong International Airport because a large percentage of passengers in Taiwan and Hong Kong overlap. Customers will feel more at home if they see similar signs at these airports, he said.

Lin said the CEO of Hong Kong International Airport gave two free lectures to the employees of Taoyuan airport.

“Both airports [Taiwan and Hong Kong] have their signs displayed in both English and traditional Chinese characters,” Lin said. “The airport in Hong Kong has accumulated many years of experience since it was officially opened in 1998 before it decided to change to the current design three years ago. We could use their signs as a reference.”

Currently, the signs in Taoyuan airport are either yellow or white print on a black background.

Lin said the signs in the Taoyuan airport will be displayed in white print on a blue background. Those for airport facilities, such as restrooms and restaurants, will have white print on a dark red background instead.

Because some traditional -Chinese characters look similar if they are viewed from a distance, such as the Chinese words for “garden” (園) and “country” (國), Lin said that the Hong Kong Airport has decided to have the Chinese characters printed in “Imitation Song” style (仿宋體), which is a script typeface modeled after the characters used during the Southern Song Dynasty.

“[Because of the change in font] Passengers can clearly see the words on the signs even if they view them from 30m away,” Lin said, adding that Taiwan will also adopt the “Imitation Song” style for the new signs.

Lin said airport passengers could start seeing the new signs displayed at the first terminal in August. All the signs in the first and second terminals will be changed by the end of next year.

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