Stadium Guidelines


05 min. reading time

Signage is the use of signs and other visual symbols for the purposes of communicating messages. Wayfinding signage is usually the type of signage most readily associated with stadiums. There are however, other forms of signage that are relevant: safety signage, other information signage, and commercial display.

Whilst these different types of signage have different purposes, it is important that an integrated approach is taken to ensure that:

• the visual appearance of different types of signs is not discordant in terms of colours, style and tone of voice.

• the positioning of signs does not obscure or dilute the message of other types of signage; and


Signage is central to the user experience and should be considered as part of the design process, including its interaction with other technical systems, particularly lighting and CCTV. Signage should be readable and comprehensible to all, including people with learning difficulties and colour-blind people.

Wayfinding, safety and informational signage should be clearly distinguishable from any commercial signage or display.


The key purpose of wayfinding is to ensure that the route from outside the stadium to the spectator seat, lounge or other destination is clear. A wayfinding strategy is, however, broader in scope than the physical signs that direct people around the stadium and its surrounding areas. It should consider the use of technology to help provide a sense of welcome and orientation, and deliver clear and consistent information to enable people to find their seat. Technology can also offer the flexibility to change messaging depending on the event being hosted and even the ongoing circumstances within the stadium. Consideration of wayfinding at the design stage will allow the integration of wayfinding measures into the built form and in optimised locations.

Figure 5.5.1
An example of wayfinding hierarchy

Wayfinding should facilitate convenient navigation between local transport systems (also known as mass rapid transit (MRT) systems), car parks, fan zones, entrances and areas within the stadium.

A hierarchy of various levels of wayfinding should be deployed to make the spectator journey, from arriving at the stadium to finding their seat, as logical and simple as possible. The number of levels will vary with the scale and complexity of the stadium.

For a large stadium, the hierarchy would typically be as follows:

5. 0. Seating blocks

these are typically the seats demarcated by aisles and accessed via a vomitory (see Sub-Section 5.2.1).

1. 0. Stadium precinct

the objective is to guide the spectator to the stadium site. Some larger sites might have multiple entrances that can be linked to different stadium sectors.

6. 0. Seating rows

these should be clearly identified at the end of each row and also on the aisle(s) used to access the block.

2. 0. Stadium sectors

these are typically stands, especially if they are of the stand-alone variety, and are depicted by colour coding (see Figure 5.5.2). The colour coding should be consistent across wayfinding signage and ticketing materials.

7. 0. Individual seats

these should be identified by a clearly visible sequential number.

3. 0. Entrance gates

these are typically the groups of turnstile blocks used to enter the stadium itself.

4. 0. Levels

most applicable to stadiums with multiple tiers. The configuration of entrance gates will often automatically separate spectators into their relevant level. However, it is always best practice to incorporate an indication of levels as part of stadium wayfinding.

Figure 5.5.2
Stadium sectors identified by clear colour coding

Figure 5.5.3
Sample ticket following the stadium sector colour coding and consistent with the wayfinding hierarchy

Wayfinding should be integrated with the ticketing strategy and consistent with the information displayed on the ticket.

The wayfinding system should be delivered in a signage family that connects to a precinct-wide information system across various styles and sizes of signage such as freestanding totems, wall signs, hanging panels, LED and digital signage. Wayfinding signage should also allow for temporary event overlay should it be needed.

Signage should be orientated perpendicular to the flow of spectators and be visible from a distance. The materials used should be durable and take account of the sign’s location and exposure to local climatic conditions.

The wayfinding strategy should extend into operational areas of the stadium to assist members of staff and the matchday workforce to navigate effectively. This should be consistent with front-of-house areas.


Safety signage communicates specific messages relating to the safety and security of spectators and other stadium users. This signage is often required by local legislation but can also help to enforce the safety and security operation within the stadium. Various types of safety signage are typically required, including those that define emergency egress and evacuation, designation of first-aid and emergency medical facilities, and signs that prohibit access or behaviours (e.g. smoking).

An example of signs that prohibit behaviour

Safety signage should be clearly recognisable by colour, matching locally recognised formats, and should be suitably scaled to allow people to read it from a distance. The illumination and power supply to any emergency signage should not fail during emergencies.

Stadiums should consider providing safety signage throughout the wider stadium precinct area, including the outer perimeter, to ensure crowds approaching and leaving the stadium are informed of any safety procedures applicable to the wider area.


In addition to signage for wayfinding and safety purposes, other information might need to be communicated via signage or other displays.
These might include the following:

• Ticketing information
• Travel information
• Upcoming events
• Waste and recycling information
• Stadium regulations
• Customer charters
• Lost-and-found facilities
• Food and beverage information
• Signage for educational purposes

Consideration should be given to integrating digital signage that can be changed quickly and easily for events. This also allows a single signage location to “scroll” through various pieces of information that are useful to the crowds.


Commercial display involves the large-scale and highly visible positioning of commercial sponsors and brands at stadiums. It can take many forms and positively influence the experience within and around the stadium. A number of these forms use the stadium building and environment, including the roof and facades, to display branding or corporate logos on a more permanent basis. The top side of a stadium’s roof can be used to paint or print a corporate logo, for example. This option may be suitable for stadiums near an airport or under a busy flight path.

A large digital screen can be integrated into the facade of the stadium to create a focal point that can display different forms of digital content.

It can be possible to display larger format graphics on stadium facades that have large areas of glazing or flat surfaces by the application of specially designed materials (often known as decals). These can be replaced and changed as required.

Less permanent solutions for multi-use stadiums may include “dressing” the venue in different ways depending on the event being staged and the teams playing. This can be achieved by using the stadium’s facade to project graphics or video content onto the flat surface, or it can be achieved by hanging printed fabric banners to display fixed content or information (also see also the information on the clean-site principle in Sub-Section 2.9.4).