08 June 2011
Legible London?
Brian Micklethwait

I photoed this yesterday afternoon, embedded in the pavement in the top bit of Horseferry Road, just past the Channel 4 building as I walked towards St James Park tube.


I was baffled, and despite visiting the website alluded to, I still am baffled.  It says: What is Legible London?  Those were my exact sentiments, and they remain my sentiments.

It is something to do with the fact that walking is often quicker, for short journeys, than using the underground.  But why this plaque in the pavement?  Is there some kind of electronic gizmo underneath, with feeds into iPhones or something?

I am sure there is a semi-rational explanation, but can anyone oblige?

(The fact that two of the screws are missing doesn’t bode well, does it?)

  1. It is a maintenance place-holder for a sign to be erected on that spot shortly.

    The sign will be similar to the one on the front page of the Legible London website and is basically a local map for pedestrians.

    Not sure why you had a problem with it frankly, it’s quite a simple concept and has been around for a couple of years.

    Posted by IanVisits on  08 June 2011 at 05:15 pm

  2. well, (a) I hadn’t heard of it until now, and (b) the plaque in the pavement, and (c) “legible”.  What has “legible” got to do with anything?

    And yes it is a simple concept, but it is not very well explained at the website.

    They explain the problem.  But where does it say: “Legible London is really just lots of new maps on poles”?

    Anyway, thanks for the explanation.

    Posted by Brian Micklethwait on  08 June 2011 at 05:30 pm

  3. “Legible” refers to the easy to read maps, presumably. It’s a shame they are struggling to write their website in English, then. Doesn’t bode well… Having said that the maps look pretty good and it does seem like a good idea to have standardised signage.

    You have click one link and read to the fourth paragraph to get this:

    “the easy-to-use system presents information in a range of ways, including on maps and signs, to help people find their way”.

    Why they couldn’t just write, “Legible London is a system of signs and maps to help pedestrians navigate” on the front page I don’t know.

    “Pedestrian wayfinding system”? Sounds like a pretty cool iPhone app to me.

    Posted by Rob Fisher on  09 June 2011 at 03:48 pm

  4. Not sure why you had a problem with it frankly, it’s quite a simple concept and has been around for a couple of years.

    I agree

    Posted by Transport on  11 June 2011 at 05:56 pm

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