The frustration of finding your way to a jetty at the Gateway of India can soon be eased by simply following a colourful light pole and graphic-labelled boards at the site, developed recently by design students from IIT-Powai.
In an attempt to improve signages at the jetty and make navigation easier around the Gateway, 15 IITians from the Industrial Design Centre (IDC) designed a signal system with lights of different colours corresponding to various locations of the ferries.
The model works in a way that the light corresponding to the destination switches on when the ferry arrives at the jetty.
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The ferries, that start at 7:30 am and continue plying till 5.30 pm, cater to people traveling to five different destinations. With no signages around for the gates as well as for the ferries, tourists face a harrowing time asking people around, spending much of the time meandering around all the gates.
“Using different cues like colour, signage and board, the project is meant to help everyone deal with the inconvenience of navigation, including the unlettered,” said Maulashree Shanbaug, a student of IDC. With a signage system powered by a solar panel, visible from a distance, and that does not mar the beauty of the heritage site, students managed to receive permissions from the tourism department, Bombay Port Trust and Colaba police.
A mock test was also conducted on April 18.
“This is the first project when students have ventured into the field during designing the prototype of the project. This helped them understand problems and requirements of the people,” said Professor BK Chakravarthy, IDC’s head of department.
Though initiated as part of the students’ project-analysis curriculum, this participatory-design project would undergo some modification and see its permanent implementation at the site next week onwards.