At first glance I love these.
It seems like a good idea and the graphic designer in me loves the arrows on the floor. Arrows on every floor I reckon. But anyway, this is the new attempt by TfL to get people to stand nicely to one side and let the passengers off. The Creative Review Blog has a good post and some great pictures here.
What I like most is that they're trying out four different designs and seeing which one works. This is a great idea. It's very rare for graphic design to measured and even rarer for it to be measured properly. But it's not just that, isn't trying out four designs just a good idea? A focus group would have been terrible, complicated and expensive. Someone at the top could have just made a decision but then you'd be relying on one person's opinion. Trying out four solutions is cheap, quick, practical and sensible.
I'm all for sensible design solutions.
The CR Blog raised some interesting points in the comments. Our own Alex said, "I think this is a great idea and well needed here in London". But then Alistair pointed out, "Since people seem unable to use even the most basic levels of common sense (and manners) to realise that standing clear of the doors and letting the passengers off first is the best way to do things, are they really going to pay any attention at all to some floor graphics?" Which is a very valid point. Maybe us designers are just getting carried away?
Patrick then pointed out, "Myself, Mark and Eliza from CR got on the Jubilee Line at Waterloo last night. Most people were obediently standing outside the white lines."
Which made me wonder just how they're going to be measured? Surely the only way to do it is with an old fashioned human being. And that's got to be more than a bit subjectve? "Only one person was standing on the yellow lines, so I considered this to be a success". And how long do you measure it for? And how often do you measure?
When I did some measurement earlier today at Waterloo, it didn't seem to be working. Not at all.
Maybe we should all measure it? Every time you use the Jubilee line take a picture and then we can start to see if we can see any patterns? Would anyone be up for that?