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Product in Focus - British Land Totems

Gavin McMurray - Monday, August 24, 2015

Building on our previous successes providing signage schemes for retail parks, Merson Signs worked closely with top London designers Portland Design on the technical design and construction methods required for their unique family of signs for British Land’s retail parks. Prior to the development of these wayfinding totems, all British Land retails parks had their own type of signage and thus lacked a uniform design, so the remit for this project was to develop a signage concept that would provide consistent branding across all British Land’s retail parks.

Initially, the signage’s organic shape and other client-specified requirements proved difficult to achieve; it was only by working with Portland and a GRP manufacturer that we were able to develop effective solutions. As well as successfully reproducing the sign’s dynamic appearance and feature illumination, we engineered cost-effectiveness and simplicity into the construction design to make it commercially deliverable.

The signs’ outer shells are formed in GRP (Glass Reinforced Plastic) – arriving at our factory in component for assembly alongside the other constituent parts. While the majority are internally lit, a number of the sign types are externally lit. The internally illuminated panels are polycarbonate held in place by a custom-manufactured gasket, providing an extremely secure fitting, yet enabling easy change-over of face panels when the need arises.
For ease of installation of the larger signs the structure was designed to accommodate a central pole running vertically inside the sign, with a removable lifting eye, used during installation to easily crane the totems into place.

These innovative features and many others allowed us to realise Portland’s design vision and deliver a unique signage scheme for British Land suited to cost-effective volume manufacture and installation.