Credits
Studio: Firebelly + IDEO
Client: Client: The City of Chicago + Motivate (fka Alta)
Strategy + Research
Project Lead: Sara Frisk and Nick Adam
Research: Sara Frisk, David Berthy, Adam Geremia, Nick Adam
Naming: Sara Frisk, David Berthy, Adam Geremia, Nick Adam, Dawn Hancock, Nick Adam, Will Miller, Ohn Ho, Greg Calvert
Design
Design Strategy and Direction: Nick Adam and Will Miller
Design Execution: Nick Adam, Will Miller, Ohn Ho, Greg Calvert
Chicago’s efforts to build an increasingly effective, pedestrian-friendly transportation system included the creation of a city-wide bike share program. The brief was for IDEO to collaborate with Firebelly in creating a name, developing a visual identity, gaining consensus across the Mayor and top city officials.
IDEO structured the research, at Firebelly we lead and executed the identity design and system. Much more than typical graphic standards, the guide comprise 40+ touch-points (bikes, stations, vans, stationery, event environments, uniforms, website, and so forth) each to be designed, rationalized, revised, and set up for production.

The double-V ligature, is based on the guillemet, or angled quotes. This glyph is often taken out of literary context to indicate direction and motion. Marked on streets across the world, this double arrow symbolizes the shared use of lanes between bicyclists and motorists. 

The logotype itself is custom, inspired by monospaced forms that share a common width to define themselves. This is akin to people defining themselves in the common widths of the road corresponding to their mode of transportation. Constructed with right angles and geometric curves, the identity is built upon the same grid that defines Chicago’s roads.

To soften the sharpness of the characters, all edges have a slightly rounded curve likened to a smooth ride of the cruiser-style bicycle. Together, the weight of each character and their rounded ends offer a trusted utilitarian look that feels part of the city vernacular. The logotype is comfortable within its urban environment.

Photo © Saverio Truglia

In transportation vernacular, the stacked double-V marking is known as ’sharrow’ as in sharing — Photo © Saverio Truglia

Photo © Saverio Truglia

Photo © Saverio Truglia

Blue Cross Blue Shield Tower announces’s $12.5M sponsorship to benefit the City of Chicago

Credits
Studio: Firebelly + IDEO
Client: Client: The City of Chicago + Motivate (fka Alta)
Strategy + Research
Project Lead: Sara Frisk and Nick Adam
Research: Sara Frisk, David Berthy, Adam Geremia, Nick Adam
Naming: Sara Frisk, David Berthy, Adam Geremia, Nick Adam, Dawn Hancock, Nick Adam, Will Miller, Ohn Ho, Greg Calvert
Design
Design Strategy and Direction: Nick Adam and Will Miller
Design Execution: Nick Adam, Will Miller, Ohn Ho, Greg Calvert
Featured
Fast Company, Innovation By Design Awards Finalist, 2014
Society of Typographic Arts, Chicago Design Archive, Best in Show, 2014
The 2013 / 14 FPO Awards, UnderConsideration, 2014
UnderConsideration Quarterly, 2014
Design Process

Stacking repeating letters be found in the Proto-Sinaitic and hieroglyphic visual languages. 

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