November 13, 2012
Southeast Fairfax Development Corporation (SFDC) held a dedication ceremony on Wednesday, November 7 to commemorate the installation of the first sign in the Richmond Highway wayfinding signage program. About 20 people attended the ceremony, including Fairfax County Supervisors Gerry Hyland and Jeff McKay, Mount Vernon-Lee Chamber Executive Director Holly Dougherty, and former SFDC Executive Director Lara Fritts.
The dedication event was the culmination of a long-term collaborative planning effort among SFDC, Fairfax County, and the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) as part of a statewide pilot program for signage. The program, which was first discussed in 2005, was created with three goals:
1. Create a cohesive feel for Richmond Highway
2. Create an identity for each commercial node
3. Guide visitors to historic/cultural amenities and natural resources on the highway
The first phase of the wayfinding program includes 12 signs: seven to mark Richmond Highway’s commercial districts and five directional signs highlighting local neighborhoods. The first sign was installed on November 1, and the remaining signs will be installed by the end of the month.
Speaking at the dedication event, Supervisor Hyland said, “This is a great day for the entire Richmond Highway community.” Supervisor McKay added, “These signs add to the long list of recent improvements to our neighborhoods,” citing the recently opened Beacon of Groveton and the plans for several new developments in Huntington, Penn Daw, and Groveton.
The signs were designed by MERJE, a nationally recognized graphic and signage design firm from Philadelphia. The red, blue, and gold color scheme was drawn from the “Mount Vernon Estate of Colours” collection developed by Finer Paints of Europe in conjunction with the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association. The designs and locations of the signs were carefully reviewed VDOT to ensure that they complied with all visibility and safety requirements.
“These high-quality and durable signs help to distinguish our unique neighborhoods,” said David Versel, Executive Director of SFDC. “They give a sense of place and promote an identity for each node of Richmond Highway.”