My final year design thesis on a complete Karachi map system named “In & Around Karachi” at Indus Valley School or Arts and Architecture. I was awarded DISTINCTION in my thesis project. I am so happy to post my thesis for all Pakistani out there.
Introduction About Karachi Map Project
The city exists for many audiences, each person has a special individual origin and destination and needs a specific travel map to reach it.
In & Around Karachi seeks to provide a common, recognizable language for the provision of way finding information where it is needed and in the most useful form. Being a seaport Karachi is one of Pakistan’s most vital and metropolitan cities. However, poor urban-planning has left it difficult to navigate. The thesis introduces a way finding system that can be used by everyone and is convenient enough to lead residents and tourists alike, through the maze-like roads and lanes with the utmost accuracy.
The aim of ‘In & Around’ is to make Karachi simple and map it out in a way that makes the experience of way finding effortless. This is achieved through an amalgamation of information including a directional signage system with full city maps and detailed town maps accompanied by printed maps, visitor information, and bus route network plans. The map is aided by illustrated icons and symbols, complete with a comprehensive legend of all the important places in Karachi including city landmarks, Mosques, hospitals etc.
As well as seeking to provide a clear, baseline information system, the map system seeks to build up accessibility to real-time electronic information readily available and efficient to access and interrogate. The use of electronic media, providing immediate and accurate information is transforming way finding worldwide. The mapping system will be available directly through the Internet providing access to the detailed city map, bus routes, and any additional information about the location.
In & Around Karachi is created for residents and visitors alike and needs to be adaptable for future projects. To achieve a singular identity, a concept was based on an identity framework or visual language. This consists of a number of key elements: Typeface, Color, Icons, Pictograms and a Mapping system.
A flexible color palette was chosen for In & Around Karachi, adding consistency and legibility to communications. In the same vein as universally acknowledged systems, specific colors are kept standard for e.g. red for Hospitals, green for parks and blue for water bodies etc.
Typeface uses Map Project
The “DINPRO” typeface is used consistently throughout the project. The typeface is highly readable and perfect for delivering information at a communal center.
About this font Family: Back in 1936 the German Standards committee Deutsches Institute Normung (DIN) proposed DIN 1451 as the standard type of lettering for road signage. As the original manual states, ‘the purpose of this standard is to lay down a style of lettering which is timeless and easily legible’. The DIN Text series was based on the original standards but was completely redesigned to fit typographic requirements and includes condensed and compressed versions.
The icons and symbols designed with the intention of being instantly understood by all. They are easily identifiable and relatable. They will also be part of the visual language to be used on the physical and digital map of Karachi.
Custom Karachi Landmarks Pictograms
3D illustrations of significant locations around the city are placed in relevant positions on the map. The renderings are done keeping a bird’s eye perspective with minimum details capturing the visual image of the place.
Full application of the Karachi Map design
The majority of the population in Karachi is not familiar with following and reading maps; instead, they get to their desired locations following landmarks. This map endeavors to revolutionize that school of thought. It adopts a distinctive viewpoint of a pedestrian map with 3D points of attraction.
Welcome Maps (Identification Signage)
– City Map: This will portray the detailed map as a complete body, highlighting the transportation system i.e. the airport, bus terminals, and railway stations along with specific landmarks.
– Towns Map: The map of the town will show a detailed portion of the particular town where it is placed extracted from the city map. These structures will be placed at the town entrances. (example Saddar Town: This map at town level are more detail form whole Karachi map. Map details are taken to Street Level)
Area specific maps
– Street Map: This map has a simple aim to provide the visitor with a pedestrian map of the vicinity they are in. These structures will be placed in specific locations within the region.
Bus Route Maps
–Bus route Map: This illustrates a simplified map of Karachi complete with its bus stops and their routes.
Foldout Karachi Map (Carry with you anywhere)
This foldout map has a simple aim to provide the citizen and tourist of Karachi to walk around the city. Information about a historic place and beaches are presented with details information also with emergency numbers and area codes.