FEBRUARY 6 2003
1.1. Benefits of Guidelines. Air Force bases are used by large numbers of people, including active
duty personnel, families and friends, civilian employees, retired personnel and others on official and
personal business. Bases function as communities as well as military installations. A well conceived
sign system effectively guides base users and makes Air Force installations more attractive, inviting
and easy to use.
1.2. Need for Guidelines. This document presents a total orientation system that integrates interior
and exterior signs with base maps and the information provided by gate guards in order to clarify
base circulation. It also establishes guidelines for non-Air Force entities whose registered trademark
signage has a recognized place in the community. Additionally, it provides guidance for
standardizing sign material, color, style and placement throughout an installation. An effective sign
program will reduce the number of signs on each installation to the absolute minimum required for
directions, identification and customer service. This eliminates visual clutter and results in an
efficient, cost effective and attractive system that enhances the quality of life and creates a unified
professional appearance for all Air Force installations. The applicability of this document is limited
to the United States Air Force.
1.3. Document Description. The document begins with an explanation of the Base Master Sign
Plan. The following chapters cover typography, graphics, sign placement, the Americans with
Disabilities Act, identification signs, direction signs, regulatory signs, motivation signs, information
signs, wall mounted signs, signs for historic buildings and interior signs. The last chapter gives
specifications and details for sign construction.
1.4. General Guidelines for Signs. Signs are most effective when they function as part of a total
orientation system that includes base maps, street signs, building signs and guidance from gate
personnel. An effective orientation system is logical, easy to follow and leads the visitor from the
point of entry to the desired destination with no confusion. In order to design an effective orientation
system, the following points should be considered.
1.4.1. Identify each decision point with a sign that clearly indicates the options.
1.4.2. Keep names of destinations consistent throughout the system, including the names on
maps and the names used by security police when they are directing visitors to points on base. A
direction sign pointing the way to the Personnel Center should lead to a building that is called
the Personnel Center and not something else.
1.4.3. Do not omit a destination from a series of direction signs until that destination is reached.
A sign series leading a visitor to a particular building should culminate in the building
identification or street address sign.