People Flow Planning for Well-Functioning Buildings in Urban Areas

Minna Piironen
Service Manager, People Flow Planning
KONE, Espoo

For the smooth movement of people into and within buildings, buildings need to be functional, easy to navigate and able to continuously adapt to future needs. This sounds simple, but it does not just happen by itself; it often has many complexities and therefore should be planned carefully and thoroughly analyzed in order to be optimized.


In this session, we will discuss how data modeling, collection and analysis allows a comprehensive understanding of a building’s People Flow functions, user groups, routes and traffic patterns, bottlenecks and opportunities for improvement. When collecting and analyzing traffic data, it is important to look both at the horizontal and vertical movement of people within the building. For the most thorough understanding, it also important to expand the analysis to include external and urban factors outside of the building. Such factors could include proximity to public transportation, access to parking areas or availability of nearby bicycle storage.


A comprehensive understanding of key guidance principles is also important to support smooth, simple wayfinding for both regular users and visitors. When buildings are operating under normal conditions, signage that is clear, accessible, easy to understand and consistent throughout the building is important. During periods of renovation, such signage becomes even more important, guiding regular users and visitors through alternative, temporary routes.


We will discuss how simulating the movements of building users based on the building population, user scenarios and the traffic profile of the building type can provide valuable insights. In the long-term, continuous real-time data collection and analysis of building traffic patterns and people flow experience can help ensure smooth people flow.