Rendering of new entrance signs to campus

Campus signage is getting a makeover. The gray and white building signs that have guided students across campus for the past decade will be replaced.

The project’s impact is larger than just replacing weathered signs; a major goal for the new signage is to better help students, employees, and visitors navigate locations and layout, whether they are walking on foot or driving around campus.

Four large monument signs will be placed around the perimeter of campus to help increase the visibility and recognition of the university. These will be located on 7th South Street, the west side of the BYU-Idaho-Center, the corner of South 1st West and West 2nd South, and near the new Visual Art Studio. In addition, 43 building signs will be placed around campus.

“As far as how many signs each building will get, it really depends on the building, its location, and where people mainly approach from.” said University Architect Chad Alldredge. “Some buildings will merit three or four, while others, only one.”

The most notable difference in the new signage are the materials they are made of. While the current signs are made of metal, the new signs are composed of travertine—a form of light-colored limestone. The travertine will be placed on top of new concrete bases where the previous signs have stood.

“Originally, we did use travertine signs about 10 years ago until they just got too old and outdated,” said Director of Architecture and Construction Management Services Andy Johnson.

“We changed styles and went with the design we currently have to achieve a more modern look. After seeing how those have fared, we’ve decided to turn back to stone, because they just look better and last longer.”

While certainly sleek, the old signage did prove hard to maintain. Sprinkler water and rain caused hardwater stains, and the signs also didn’t fare any better in sunnier weather. The sun baked the vinyl, causing it to discolor, crack, and peel. With travertine being a natural element, the stone signs will withstand weather better and be easier to touch-up. The signs will keep their simplicity, displaying the BYU-Idaho logo and building name. The etched letters will be painted black to increase visibility against the lighter stone.

“There are a lot of factors to the process, such as the size of the signs or how far the letters are spaced apart. It’s this back-and-forth process of fine-tuning, adjusting, and testing different iterations to get these signs approved and perfect,” Alldredge said. 

The installation began on November 15 and is expected to be completed by December 15.