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ARCHIVE: Category Archive for: Others

Mixing It Up with Mixed Development

While the U.S. is seeing a definite increase in mixed-use developments, they’re actually not a new concept. In fact, according to Deloitte, mixed-use properties were strategies used about 50 years ago to rejuvenate urban areas. And as population density increases, real estate prices remain high and office occupancy remains low, mixed-use developments offer an attractive option for developers, companies, tenants, and residents. Live, Work, Shop, Play A trend that had been growing in popularity even prior to COVID-19, the pandemic accelerated the planning, design, and construction of mixed-use developments. In fact, in Boston alone, there are at least seven major mixed-use projects under construction right now.  These properties empower residents and visitors to have more control in their choices and

World on the Move: Approaches to Transportation Hub Signage and Wayfinding

J.R.R. Tolkien said, “Not all those who wander are lost.”  But in general, travelers prefer to know where they’re going. Whether an environment’s familiar or not, well designed signage helps ensure that only those who want to wander are free to do so — and everyone else can successfully find their way without getting lost. Wayfinding, or directional, signs serve four main purposes:  Pointing people where they need to go. Identifying landmarks (rooms, concourses, wings, and other important features). Informing people about regulations and instructions a space requires them to follow. Defining the space, because transportation hubs are large, open spaces, and wayfinding branding helps define and bring consistency to the property. As with wayfinding signs used in other facilities like

Inside Metro Sign

One of the easiest ways to get recognition is to put up a sign. We’ve all seen those iconic signs that garner instant attention: The Citgo Sign in Kenmore Square, Cask ‘n Flagon next to Fenway, McDonalds’ golden arches. Target’s bullseye. A quick glance at these signs tells us immediately what store we’ve found. But these globally recognized icons—like any sign, really—needed serious planning and strategy to work effectively.  Most people—even smart businesses who hire a company like Metro—don’t realize all the steps involved with designing, building, and installing signage. Adding signs requires more than simply hanging a sign on an interior wall or erecting a sign on a pole outside. Developing a signage strategy, from conceptualization through installation, often

Restaurant Signage Enhances Dining and Profits

With warmer weather upon us, vaccination rates increasing, and restrictions lifting, people have been venturing out to visit their favorite restaurants in person. The pandemic hit the restaurant industry very hard — and while it’ll take time for the industry to recover from its 2020 losses, owners can take heart based on the results of a recent June survey conducted by Morning Consult: 70% feel safe eating at a restaurant, a 3% increase from the end of May 67% feel safe dining indoors 76% feel safe dining outside 59% indicated they’ll feel comfortable dining out by July Consumer excitement about eating out continues to grow and friends and family who’ve not seen each other in person for months look forward to connecting

Who Doesn’t Love a Good Challenge?

Here at Metro, we’ve developed a reputation for overcoming challenges. In 2020, the pandemic required us to rethink our approach to projects and conduct much of our collaboration in a remote environment. Government buildings closed for weeks, which presented another challenge for obtaining signage permits and staying on deadline with project installations. Clients saw initial project budgets shrink, so our team worked with them to devise alternative signage options—in design, materials, or both. At Metro, we love a good challenge. Challenges make us better because they require us to grow and innovate—and that benefits our clients and our partners, especially when we’re faced with a new “problem” we’ve not encountered before. And let’s face it. It isn’t just us signage

Hanging Signs Isn’t Always a Straightforward Task

You’d think a parking garage would be a fairly cut and dry project, with color-coded signs for each level, arrows to direct traffic flow, ADA signage, elevator occupancy signs, and indications pointing out stairwells, right? Well, like the posted 5 mph speed limit, not so fast. A lot more planning and coordination goes into designing, manufacturing, and installing signs for a parking deck than it first appears. Metro began work on the Hamilton Canal Innovation District Parking Structure in collaboration with general contractor Shawmut Design and Construction of Boston, MA. In addition to providing signage for the brand new parking structure, future plans for this project include creating and installing signs for the office building yet to come. Collaboration and

An Event of Their Own

As much as we love making new signs, sometimes we mourn the loss of one more long-standing neon landmark from our youth. So when the good folks at Lombardo’s Meetings & Occasions approached us about updating their iconic parking lot sign, we knew exactly how the family felt.    Over 35 years, many of us have passed the sign towering above Highway 28 in Randolph, Massachusetts; a beacon of big events from weddings to work conferences. That’s why we shared a few tears with the elder Lombardos watching a part of the original sign come down with cranes earlier this year. New Sign Design The decision to update wasn’t easy; with two generations of family members weighing in.  The consensus

The Writing’s On the Wall

Metro Sign & Awning

Bette Davis once said, “I’d luv ta kiss ya, but I just washed my hair.” The tough-talking, Academy Award-winning actress was born at 22 Chester Street in Lowell, Massachusetts. As one of the oldest cities in the Commonwealth, Lowell has been home to many notable and quotable people not only in entertainment but politics, military, law, academics, sports, science, arts and literature. That’s why it was only fitting that Thorndike Exchange in historic downtown Lowell take motivational quotes from famous past residents as a starting point for their interior and exterior signage.   A Sal Lupoli residential project, Thorndike Exchange is a refurbished old mill building transformed into a mixed-use destination with contemporary commercial space and a posh multi-story residential

New Sign for Cohoes Music Hall is More Than Just a Sign

The Cohoes Music Hall is the 4th oldest operational music hall in the United States. Built in 1874, the Cohoes Music Hall is more than just a music hall to the locals. It signifies the culture and closeness of the entire community and provides a gathering place for various events. This historic music hall just received a significant upgrade to the outside of the building with the installation of an impressive sign that reflects its Victorian character, as well as its history, while adding a modern aspect. More Than Just A Sign For Cohoes Residents The new dazzling Cohoes Music Hall marquee blade sign is one of the most unique signs you will see. This projecting sign stands 15-feet tall

Awnings, Enclosures, and Operational Advantages

Awning enclosures are a great addition to any business or restaurant. Not only do awnings provide an aesthetically pleasing upgrade the outside of your storefront, they can also save your business  money when it comes to businesses maintenance expenses and heating and cooling costs.  Besides the advertising boost an awning or enclosure provides, investing in an awning, canopy or other type of enclosure often means gaining several operational advantages that can help you grow your business. Below we highlight some of the operational advantages of awnings, canopies and enclosures. How Awnings Enhance Safety Whatever the weather, having an awning installed outside your business can improve safety and comfort for both your customers and employees. Awnings and enclosures provide a barrier 

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