Finally, after months of preparation, we have launched the digital signage system in DR’s new headquarter in Copenhagen… and it went well
From a workplace to a place to create.
That was the headline of the project from day one. DR Byen has been built by four different architects who has made four very different buildings.
Pictures from one of the four buildings in DR Byen
Our project was meant to deliver an integrated communication platform and to ‘bring the media’ inside these buildings.
As you can see on this images the last part in the project (the Concert Hall) is still more or less a construction sites (see the official site here). About three quarters of the building is finished and the digital signage project has been launch in three of the four parts of the building.
Number one: To connect the architecture with our corporate identity:
First of all, we needed to make a tighter connection between the architecture and the corporate identity.
Danish Broadcasting Corporation (DR) is, as the name implies, a media corporation. And although it’s an amazing piece of architecture made by 4 different companies, it is not immediately obvious that it was the home of the largest Danish media corporation, that we are delivering high quality public service content, and that we are the de facto keepers of the Danish cultural media heritage.
Second, we are experiencing an increasing competition in the media business, and the most important competitive advantage is creativity. Therefore I believe that it is absolutely vital to create a pleasant and inspiring environment for creativity to happen. Of course we can’t do an ROI calculation on how much creativity this project will generate, but I believe that we are creating the ground upon which creativity may grow more easily than usual. And that’s why we have been focusing on the integration of different kinds of visual art in the project and creating an experience instead of just an information screen.
Finally, our customers have ever changing needs, and therefore we must able to communicate very fast inside the organization and also be able to change our communication procedures very quickly, if needed. A fully automated digital platform, as the one we have created, is a big asset in this race. In the web-2.0-user-has-the-power communication world of today it’s very important to have non-intrusive way of pushing important communication to your stakeholders, employees and customers.
First of all, the Entrance.
When you step into DR at groundlevel, this is what you see. Three large video projections (one is hidden in this image) on the white and grey concrete walls.
We’ve been working closely together with the architects to create a coherent experience of the room. The content is very abstract and meant to supplement the room with depth, dynamic and a creative atmosphere.
I think it’s important, to be very courageous and to use an abstract and symbolic content that will activate the viewer instead of communicating in the usual corp-speak discourse. We should stimulate experiences with the use of symbols and montage-effects and not with the use the very powerful media to promote corporate taglines. See for instance how Jason Eppink is transforming standard commercials to street art.
The entrance from another angle:
The foyer from one of the side entrances. Four 19″ monitors placed on a white concrete wall.
The ‘Main Street’ on the 2nd floor:
The connection between the four buildings in the ‘DR City’ is a giant glass-covered street (12*18 meters) with a bridge crossing the water channel going through the area called ‘Ørestaden’.
In this part of the building we have placed 6 46″ screens. The content consists of news from our own news-channel and news from the department of corporate communicate. Besides that, there are breakers made by young visual artists. They we’re given access to our media archives and used some of the old material to make new artistic expressions.
The ‘Main Street’ viewed from the bridge on the fourth floor.
Every screen has it’s own unique flow of information configured to the specific physical context and user behaviour.
The Meeting Center:
In our Meeting Center we’ve made an integration to MS Exchange Server. In this way our meeting booking system is automatically updated on the screens next to each meeting room. The interface is based on Flash using xml-data from Exchange generated by AgendaX.
Well, this is just phase one of the project. In the next 1-3 month we will be creating a lot more content to the system, for instance the weather forecast, trailers, traffic information and of course more visuals. In february we’re having the first art exhibition with the project ‘Runner’ in collaboration with Illumenart and EPI. Hopefully, we be able to extend the system to the other parts of DR in Jutland and on Bornholm and most importantly we’re learning a lot about what it takes to maintain and use this kind of communication platform.
Besides this, we’re of course looking forward to completion of the concert hall and to the exciting task of creating the digital projections in and outside the concert hall See the pictures. That’s gonna be amazing!!
I will hopefully be able to upload some video soon. It gives a better sense of the look and feel of the displays.
Please comment if you have any good ideas or experiences with digital signage solutions.