On Sunday, Metro rider/graphic designer Jen Scharl noticed that the handrails in the Fort Totten Metro station were color-coded:
You guys. This graphic designer is LOSING HER MIND. The @wmata escalators now have the colors of which line they take you too. Coolest use of colors to actually help people. pic.twitter.com/gKxTTemkrT
— Jen Scharl (@thejennyjude) April 8, 2018
She's not the only one who snapped a photo.
It’s real- I took this picture this morning. pic.twitter.com/kkLSVWMu2L
— Laura Checovich (@laura_checovich) April 9, 2018
A lot of people seemed to be fans of the idea:
This is one of those brilliant ideas that is so obvious in hindsight!
— Steve Wartik (@slimsteve) April 8, 2018
— John Gurnick (@gurnick) April 9, 2018
Other Twitter users pointed out that color-coding was used in systems elsewhere around the world:
— (((Herid Fel))) (@heridfan) April 9, 2018
This is how the London tube was originally designed - with coloured tiling to help those who couldn’t read. https://t.co/NItOsy6nKr
— Susanna Forrest (@Susanna_Forrest) April 9, 2018
Some people worried that this wouldn't aid people who are colorblind. However, it's helpful to have a variety of wayfinding tools for different riders, and adding color-coded handrails doesn't mean Metro is doing away with other signage.
Not so useful for the colourblind…(~8% of all males I believe?) nice for the rest. They could have added additional cues, using colour alone is usually a bad design decision for use in public spaces. pic.twitter.com/nHbgcuisAC
— Jelmer Verhoog (@JelmerVerhoog) April 9, 2018
What do you think of the colored handrails — good idea, or na?