Environment Design

Important Note

Look up your country’s accessibility laws and standards in order to work within those design constraints.


  • Spatial

  • Navigate through familiar environments.

  • Utilize distinctive landmarks within an area to use create defined routes.

  • Linear

  • Follow a series of directional signs (e.g. airports, metro stations, etc.).

  • Must be a complete, consistent, understandable, and accurate system.

  • Keep it clear but err on the side of thoroughness — the more items you add to the sign, the higher the cognitive load.


Visual Messaging

Non-glare or matte finish for lettering and background surfaces.

Comply with international standards for pictogram usage.

Font size must be calculated by its relationship to the viewing distance (about 25mm cap height per 750mm of distance).

It doesn’t take into account a person’s height, or the height of the display.


Tactile Messaging

Depth of raised lettering should be greater than or equal to 0.8mm.

Use sans serif for raised lettering.

Difference between tactile messaging and graphic elements should be 10mm apart.

Messaging placement should be between 1200mm and 1500mm from the floor.

Tracking should be no less than 3mm and no greater than four times the stroke width.

Cap-height should be between 16-50mm.

Mixed case is better than all caps, but use local standards.

Braille should be placed directly below raised text, but standards vary by region.


Best Practices

Determine directional signage mount height by eye level and viewing distance.

Information must provide a minimum knee clearance of 610mm in height and depth.

Any objects protruding over 100mm requires cane detectible warnings.