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New NIEHS signs include NTP

By Eddy Ball
September 2010

new sign at the T.W. Alexander Drive entrance to campus
First impressions count. The new sign appears at the T.W. Alexander Drive entrance to campus, welcoming visitors to the world headquarters of cutting-edge environmental public health research. (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)

new sign on the Rall Building
With finishing touches applied, the new sign on the Rall Building is a negative image of the sign at the campus entrance. (Photo by Eddy Ball)

new directory signs
The new directory signs also feature the color contrast of the other signs. (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)

an old sign, now replaced, without NTP and an outdated NIEHS logo
The old sign, now replaced, did not include the NTP and showed an outdated NIEHS logo. (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)

NIEHS underwent a minor facelift in July and August when workers installed new signs on campus that include NTP for the first time. The new signs employ a sharp contrast between black and off-white, giving them a certain retro charm and eye-catching appeal, while at the same time balancing abstract elements for a more modern look than the signs they replaced.

Photographer Steve McCaw has taken many photos using the NIEHS sign as a backdrop, and he was able to provide some file photos to show how the public face of the Institute has changed over the years, as its signage evolved to reflect the growing importance of its work.

the 1990 main building sign was made up entirely of words
In the 1990s, the main building sign was made up entirely of words, which offered a sharper contrast with the building, but lacked the visual interest of the logo-wording mix that replaced it. (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)

earlier sign at the NIEHS entrance with lighting
This earlier sign at the NIEHS entrance was an improvement over its predecessors and featured lighting, but it also reflected an agency still not quite certain about how to communicate its image. (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)

NIEHS toyed briefly with the tombstone look
NIEHS toyed briefly with the tombstone look, as it moved away from one of its first efforts, below, to put a public face on its work. (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)

One of the first signs was small and plain
One of the first signs announcing NIEHS to visitors was a small, plain, and obviously temporary affair, matching the lackluster rented headquarters on the old North Campus. (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)



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