[SYD21]

Sydney Olympic Park Authority Wayfinding Project with oOh!media [DRAFT]



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Project Overview

Together with Sydney Olympic Park Association (SOPA), oOh! has created a connected precinct, enhancing the functionality of the parklands and connecting workers, visitors residents to their surroundings.

With the park encompassing Australia’s largest events precinct; 430ha of parkland and a growing community of residents, students and businesses, welcoming over 10 million people each year and research conducted concluding that up to 77% of visitors attended the park between only 1-4 times per year – there was a job to be done to enhance the familiarity of the space for patrons. Furthermore, 50% those people were unsatisfied with the ease at which they could find their destination within The Park. Prior to oOh!media’s input, the town centre had also been utilising a dated PA system that was ineffective in delivering public service announcements over a sustained period and no public Wi-Fi was accessible.

With the growing community and millions of casual visitors, it was crucial that Sydney Olympic Park Authority (SOPA) addressed community needs and created a connected ecosystem that would enhance the public space and connect residents and visitors to the precinct around them while informing them with up to date transport information, service requirements and amenities. Through collaboration as long term partners, an ecosystem of cutting edge, digital wayfinding kiosks was delivered, turning SOPA into a physically connected community.

Project Commissioner

Sydney Olympic Park Authority

Project Creator

oOh!media

Team

oOh!media and Sydney Olympic Park Authority

Project Brief

Sydney Olympic Park Authority (SOPA) is home to “the best Olympic Games ever” and has been thoughtfully re-purposed into a thriving epicentre of residential, business, education and tourist activity. It is the only microcosm of a city of its type in the country and its evolution is continuous.
The SOPA Master Plan was updated in 2018 with a strong emphasis on meeting the needs of the community, creating a modern and vibrant township, communicating events and businesses within the park, and in turn–enhancing the public domain.
SOPA and oOh!media collectively brought the vision for the Park to life and created an environment that would enhance where citizens live, work, play and most importantly, connect.
A total of 10 wayfinding kiosks were installed, geographically spread across the precinct at primary points of interest such as directly outside the train station, at the ferry wharf, in the central business area, near the stadium and in close proximity to major carparks. The kiosks incorporate bespoke-designed mapping software to inform users of events and “What’s On”; point them to places of interest or modes of transport; and navigate to local businesses that play a large part in generating SOPA’s community atmosphere.
The kiosks flipped the SOPA customer experience on its head with an ease of navigation around the precinct, event directory, public transport updates and health and safety information and communications readily available for all users. The kiosks are becoming a central source of information and connection for ALL citizens.

Project Innovation/Need

An ecosystem of cutting-edge, digital-information kiosks were developed, incorporating smart-technology, are interactive and dynamic in nature and designed to put citizens at the core of SOPA, boost economic activity for local businesses, while providing a safe public space for citizens. For the first time, customers would be able to transition out of a car park, ferry wharf, bus or train station and interact with a kiosk at any time, that would help navigate from place to place, be it an event or a service. The roll out is the first of its type, at scale, within a single precinct in Australia.
The systems developed by oOh! in collaboration with SOPA will enhance the community experience, communications opportunities, data gathering and insights and improve security systems. The aggregated and anonymised data collected will also help SOPA refine future offerings and events.
The SOPA website links to kiosks to ensure events and points of interest are promoted on the display, amplifying messages that would otherwise only be online.
The emergency alert function provides SOPA with an instant platform to communicate with precinct users. This could be in the event of major public transport disruptions, inclement weather, a police or emergency services operation or a threat to public health and safety.
As we are on the path to recovery, Kiosks can be used to analyse and understand visitor data from the precinct, including monitoring changes in footfall within the precinct during COVID-19 and as events continue to open up.

Design Challenge

SOPA encompasses Australia’s largest events precinct; 430ha of parkland and a growing community of residents, students and businesses, welcoming over 10 million people each year. However, research conducted from 2015-2018 concluded that up to 77% of visitors attended the precinct between only 1-4 times yearly, causing low familiarity of the area. Furthermore, 50% of those people were unsatisfied with the ease at which they could find their destination within The Park.

SOPA’s objectives lay in the enhanced user experience and build of the kiosks to capture data and understand how people were using the precinct, and inform future decision making. The kiosks designed needed to be fit for external weather challenges, touch screen enabled for ease of navigation, while supplying a value exchange for users through the Wi-Fi and directional offering throughout the precinct. The interface required easier accessibility for wheelchair users by effectively ‘adjusting’ the screens to alternative heights.

Kiosks are used in several capacities:
• Highlighting public art
• Promoting transport in proximity to transport links
• Advise on road closures, 'What's on and local business offerings boosting ancillary economic activity
• Data collection determining which new shops or services would appeal most to customers

The kiosks required ability to update and display emergency or public service announcements throughout the precinct almost instantaneously, an opportunity which oOh! made possible. This has demonstrated to be a crucial element of design to connect with citizens in the wake of Covid-19.

Sustainability

The kiosks high resolution displays are engineered to be durable, secure, resistant to harsh weather conditions and easily viewed in direct sunlight. SOPA and oOh!’s collaborative software design process, would enable content from the Sydney Olympic Park website to be seamlessly pushed onto the kiosks.

Smart City device reporting on local environmental factors via nitrogen dioxide & carbon dioxide sensors is available to oOh! and SOPA through the kiosks. The in-built sensors report temperature, humidity, pollution levels and air pressure into an online dashboard to observe local environmental patterns. Nitrogen dioxide levels can be monitored and compared against the DPIE Air Quality Index, and this information can be used to display messaging about health risks such as air quality, like during bushfire seasons. This truly demonstrates an innovative way in which the community is at the core of the development of the wayfinding kiosks.

The kiosk housings are made of powder coated sheet metal with an estimated life span of at least 20 years. This means that SOPA will not need to reinvest in wayfinding structures, reducing any future environmental waste.




This award celebrates creativity and innovation in the process of designing and shaping cities, towns and villages, and is about making connections between people and places, movement and urban form, nature and the built fabric. Consideration given to giving form, shape and character to groups of buildings, streets and public spaces, transport systems, services and amenities, whole neighbourhoods and districts, and entire cities, to make urban areas functional, attractive and sustainable.
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