Project — The Leat
Client — Roach + Partners
An identity for student housing in Exeter, built by Roach + Partners. With unexpected levels of finish paired with a quirky edge, the visual system looked at reflecting this though flexible interlocking graphics, a bespoke typeface (created specifically for use on way finding and signage), plus a diamond graphic device (informed by the entrance gate, created by a local Exeter artist).
The site of the development has a Leat running directly through the centre – built in the 9th century as a flood defence and also used later in the industrial period in the production of cotton and brass. The project required a clear reference to the history of the site, whilst inserting a fresh energy to the site which would resonate with the student population.
Initial promotional work (used to generate interest) was bright, bold and contemporary. This slowly gives way to a more toned down aesthetic when on site, allowing for materials such as brass, steel and corten within the wayfinding to drive the feeling of quality and detailing.
Bespoke Typography — The Leat Sans
A bespoke type family was created in 3 weights and 2 cuts (stencil and semi-stencil), specifically for signage and wayfinding. The weights allow for consistent application across a range of materials and at varying sizes, including a 3 metre wall 'plaque' piece.
A large part of the project focused in wayfidning and signage. Each of the 3 buildings (named after birds – a reference to the site previously being called Eagle House), gained their own personality, including illustrative mascots. The visual language toned down, focusing heavily on the custom typeface and use of materials, including corten brass, copper and brushed steel. A diamond graphic threads through the artwork, informed by the entrance gate, which occasionally breaks to add informality.