2 Sign lettering originally hand-painted or embossed on steel plates No standardizationAs motor vehicles traveled at higher speeds, signs became more difficult to read
3 Established uniform typefaces for US signs Originated in 1940sEstablished uniform typefaces for US signsDifferent series = different widthsSeries A = narrowestSeries F = widestWider typefaces generally more legibleWorked adequately for many years
5 Fat stroke width = narrow internal spaces especially on certain letters
6 Overglow (halation)Caused by greater brightness of letters vs. backgroundcauses letters to blurInternal spaces ‘disappear’
7 Federal Series worked well Research goals: but can we do better?Research goals:Reduce overglow / halationImprove legibility for given letter sizeImprove legibility for older drivers
8 Studies recommend larger letter sizes for older drivers but this could greatly increase sign sizesWhat if you could get increased legibility with same letter sizes?
9 Five different studies to refine concept Used both laboratory and field studiesLooked at existing typefacesAdapted the "best of" eachDeveloped and refined letter shapes, spacing, etc. in successive studies
10 Studies showed substantial improvements in legibility vs. E(M) Up to 12-16%in some cases
11 Clearview Interim Approval Use allowed with FHWA’s permissionIs NOT yet OK for unrestricted useClearview Interim ApprovalIssued by FHWA September 2004Arizona OKd by FHWA September 2005Only for “positive contrast signs”light text on dark background
16 Spacing between letters of different sizes Fractions“oddball” sizesSpacing between letters of different sizesClearviewHwy in SignCAD doesn’t properly space:Cardinal directions with larger 1st letterSuffixes (st, nd, rd, th)
17 Here's a typical guide sign in classic E Modified...
18 Series E Modified: Whole numeral and fraction are same height Fractional numeral is exactly 2/3 fraction heightSimple, clean math for fractions
21 Clearview: Fraction now larger than whole numeral Fraction is not aligned with other lettersNo easy way to lay out by hand on sign panelDoesn’t line up with baseline, loop height, or uppercase heightOffset vertically - not centered
22 Actual fraction vertical dimension is 109% of 'nominal' size Fractional numeral in Clearview is 8% smaller than standard sizeViolates MUTCD (Table 2E-4)Actual fraction dimension is "odd" sizeDoesn't line up well with even-inch spacing
23 …but now the fraction is actually over 19" tall! Need to increase fraction size to get MUTCD compliance16.4" nominal fraction size yields 10" fractional numerals…but now the fraction is actually over 19" tall!… and still doesn't line up with anything
24 For SignCAD plans to display correct Clearview fraction size, designers must convert every fraction to graphicOne done, cannot be changedVery tedious manual workIf not done, sign dimensions are wrongDoesn’t ensure the sign will actually be built with correct fraction
25 Use the built-in fraction Keep converting fractions to graphic Develop a new fractionIf made same height as whole numeral, then dimensions are much simplerTurns out some sign manufacturers were already making Clearview signs this way! (not using built-in fractions)
26 ADOT-modified fraction: Same height as whole numeralSame height as traditional fractionKeeps sign panel dimensions simpleEnsures that sign as designed will be consistent with sign as builtUse this modified fraction instead of built-in fraction on ADOT projects!
27 If all letters are the same size, no problem with spacing in SignCAD
28 SignCAD reverts to 0” default spacing between letters of different sizes this doesn't really look right...
29 Sign designers must insert space by hand to fix Tedious workHoping to automate in future in SignCAD
30 ADOT is developing SignCAD templates for nearly all standard guide signs FreewaysConventional roadwaysRamps & freeway crossroads
31 Templates will have “info boxes” Correct vertical dimensionsHints & tips for formattingTemplates will incorporate Clearview typefacesIncluding ADOT-specific fractionsStill under developmentWill be released when completed