Architecture Centre Devon and Cornwall
The Architecture Centre Devon and Cornwall (ACD&C) was set up in 2006 as part of the Architecture Centre Network (a network of regional architecture centres). Alongside designing their brand identity, we were commissioned to develop their website in partnership with the web development company, Altcom.Read More...
ACD&C has a mission to promote outstanding design and architecture in the built environment through a wide ranging programme of initiatives. With a very small team of staff, it was obvious from the start that the website should play a key role in delivering the Centre’s ambitious objectives.
In working with Altcom, the challenge was to develop a website using the open source content management system, Joomla, to enable quick and easy updates by staff – whilst ensuring that it projected the Centre with gravitas and credibility, and reflected the organisation’s design values.
In discussing the project’s needs with ACD&C’s Director, Tanya Griffiths, it was felt in particular the site should act as a ‘first port of call’ or ‘shop-front’ for anyone coming to the organisation – as well as providing an extensive and up to date information resource – thus relieving staff of the need to deal with simple day to day enquiries.
Our design approach was directed by the need to present lots of information in a way that is accessible and engaging for the Centre’s very broad audience. Our solution was to base the design of the site on a multi-column grid system, thus creating a structure which permits great flexibility in how different types of information are presented, whilst retaining presentational consistency throughout the site.
The resulting bulletin board style design provides visitors with an immediate overview of the latest news, events, case studies and other online resources (our intention was that even a quick visit to the site would give visitors a quick understanding of the purpose and services of the Centre). Visitors are then provided with opportunities to further explore the depth and breadth of information, by way of the simple to use menu system and clearly identified highlight links throughout the site.
The look and feel of the website builds on ACD&C’s brand identity to reinforce their core values. In particular, the use of grey (the brand’s foundation colour) reflects the Centre’s professionalism and serious mindedness, whilst yellow (which acts as the brand’s accent colour to signal the organisation’s creativity, dynamism and inclusiveness) is used sparingly as a call to action and to aid navigation.