City of Big Shoulders and Sans Serif
January 23, 2012 7:41 AM   Subscribe

One designer's attempt to create a logo for each of Chicago's seventy-seven community areas, and a few of the more well-known neighborhoods in between.

While not exactly the most original exercise, this attempt also gives a brief history of each neighborhood, as well as covering some that are often overlooked. Check out Englewood's grisly past, Beverly's overwhelming Irish pride, and the most common building in Garfield Ridge.
posted by dinty_moore (33 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
While not exactly the most original exercise

Thought I'd seen something like this a couple of weeks back and if I recall, it was not well received as a creative endeavor.
posted by jsavimbi at 7:45 AM on January 23, 2012


Here's a typographic map of Chicago's neighborhoods. Another typographic map of Chicago streets and parks.
posted by desjardins at 7:49 AM on January 23, 2012 [2 favorites]


it was not well received as a creative endeavor

It wasn't about New York.
posted by DU at 7:51 AM on January 23, 2012 [6 favorites]


It's a neat project, but one should note that another group of designers has already given it a go.
posted by koeselitz at 7:52 AM on January 23, 2012 [2 favorites]


If this is a double, sorry! My google-fu must have failed me; I searched through the Chicago, design, and typography posts for the past year and I couldn't find anything.

Desjardins: I got my brother the second typographic map for Christmas last year, it looked absolutely lovely in person.
posted by dinty_moore at 7:53 AM on January 23, 2012


I don't think it's a double, it's just the same general endeavor as this designer's project to brand each of Minnesota's lakes, previously posted on the Blue here.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 7:55 AM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


(Not a double, dinty_moore; I was kind of joking above. My link was to a recent post about printed "calling cards" of various old Chicago gangs; heh. I really like this link. Thanks for it.)
posted by koeselitz at 7:57 AM on January 23, 2012


I like this one better than the Lakes one, they actually seemed to strive for some sort of wordplay or cultural throwback in the designs as opposed to just throwing generic fonts over anonymous water.
posted by june made him a gemini at 8:11 AM on January 23, 2012


I wish the list was complete. I wanted to see Hyde Park, South Shore, Old Town, and lots of others I used to roam.
posted by charlesminus at 8:12 AM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


Nothing for Albany Park yet?
posted by MrBobaFett at 8:15 AM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


No references to lesbians in Andersonville? I call foul.
posted by goethean at 8:17 AM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


It wasn't about New York.

I can only imagine. The logo for Williamsburg would be an askew trucker hat, Bensonhurst, a can of hairgel.
posted by jonmc at 8:32 AM on January 23, 2012


I like these. Some of them are quite clever. This one has a nice feel of Saul Bass to me, though more film titles than logo design.
posted by iotic at 8:34 AM on January 23, 2012


Once an area known for it's abundance of industrial pollution, leading to the nickname "Smokey Hollow," River North is now an established center for the art community that is "brimming with galleries, production companies, photography studios and interior design businesses."

Also a lot of nightclubs and attendant young women in frighteningly short dresses for January.
posted by shakespeherian at 8:43 AM on January 23, 2012


Meh.

Archer Heighs I totally disagree with. He had other opportunities Would have killed him to do a bungalo then?

The SW Side is known by their parks. Marquette, Gage; or Midway Airport?

Where is Englewood?
posted by stormpooper at 8:45 AM on January 23, 2012



I think they're ugly. The first thing that hit me when I clicked the link was how cheesy they looked.

Mostly just a stylized way of spelling out the name of the neighborhood. I have this-many fonts!

I'd have liked to have seen some cohesion to the fonts, a "branding" of individual neighborhoods inside the City of Chicago. So an over-arching style for the city and the neighborhoods clearly part of the whole.

Something in the nature of a post mark. Or a house-brand in a supermarket. (This may be a bad example, as the blog discusses the similarity of the different products, but I love the look and feel of the Publix brand.)
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 8:48 AM on January 23, 2012 [2 favorites]


Where is Englewood?

It's an incomplete project. He started with what he knew, hence as a Beverly boy he focussed on the South Side. I look forward to Austin.
posted by readery at 8:52 AM on January 23, 2012


Yeah, what I really liked about this was that there was some sort of knowledge behind the choice of design. Trust me, the choice for a single-level bungalow for Garfield Ridge is just perfect.

I admit I was surprised that they hadn't done some of the more popular neighborhoods (such as Lincoln Park and Hyde Park) yet. I can't tell without looking at a map, but it seems like the designer might be focusing on the corners and moving in. He seems to be trying for a couple of logos every week, so it'll be interesting to see what comes out when.

Englewood's kind of threw me: it seemed odd to focus on one grisly event in the neighborhood's history, though focusing on more recent neighborhood events wouldn't be much kinder.
posted by dinty_moore at 8:54 AM on January 23, 2012


This popped up on the Rogers Park Everyblock page a few months ago because the designer had originally used the main building from Indian Boundary Park to illustrate Rogers Park...which led to discussion of whether that park is actually in Rogers Park proper (it's not). It's interesting how territorial people get about their neighborhoods.
posted by bibbit at 8:59 AM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


...not exactly the most original exercise...

Wait, let me check to see if the logo for my old neighborhood, Logan Square, has an eagle and a pillar...

Yup, there it is.
posted by midmarch snowman at 9:00 AM on January 23, 2012 [2 favorites]


No Boystown/Lakeview yet. I look forward to seeing more.

No references to lesbians in Andersonville? I call foul.

Here, maybe this'll tide you over until it's added:

When my friend "needs" to say lesbian on stage, say, to introduce the cellist in the next set, he leans into the mic and says with a conspiratorial tone, "I'm not saying she likes to fuck girls; I'm just saying... that she eats in Andersonville." That line plays so well in this town.
posted by heyho at 9:00 AM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


Stormpooper: Englewood is between 63rd and 76th, focused around Halsted. It's not a place people tend to go without a very specific reason.
posted by dinty_moore at 9:04 AM on January 23, 2012


Slightly off topic, but is there a good source for the ethnic socio economic mix (or lack thereof) in each of the seventy seven? For those of us not from Chicago?
posted by IndigoJones at 9:15 AM on January 23, 2012


Slightly off topic, but is there a good source for the ethnic socio economic mix (or lack thereof) in each of the seventy seven? For those of us not from Chicago?

Here's a start, at least
posted by Copronymus at 9:23 AM on January 23, 2012


Well done, Copronymus!

Even greater detail esp. ethnic is always welcome. There's much diversity within these skin colors and racial groupings.
posted by IndigoJones at 9:44 AM on January 23, 2012


Please, please, please. North Park and Albany Park. Never enough love for Kimball & Foster.
posted by jeanmari at 11:44 AM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


Rogers Park is the intersection of two Native American trails. Huh. I lived there for years, and didn't know.

I like the history lesson, but if I'm trying to represent a neighborhood in a logo, I'd focus on something a little more current, like the fact that it's the most diverse and integrated neighborhood in a rather segregated city, if not close to the most diverse in the country. (Cheers to Copronymus' map, btw!)
posted by johnnypollen at 11:49 AM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


Just to be clear, I totally didn't make that map, I just knew of it from when it got posted here a while back.
posted by Copronymus at 12:04 PM on January 23, 2012


These are interesting, the selection of Holmes' murder hotel for Englewood is...interesting, to say the least.

Milwaukee has a series of posters that were commissioned in 1983 to represent our different neighborhoods. They're varying degrees of interesting and have a history of the community on the back written by John Gurda, a local historian. If you're in the city long enough, you'll see them (or paintings of them) around town here and there. Apparently you can still order them from the city for $3/ea. They also offer the awesome classic Milwaukee feeds and supplies the world poster for $5, which is a steal if you don't already have 3 copies in your house (which you probably do if you're a second-generation resident).
posted by nTeleKy at 1:20 PM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


No references to lesbians in Andersonville? I call foul.

FYI. We're all in Ravenswood now. Priced/strollered out.
posted by Lieber Frau at 8:25 PM on January 23, 2012


"FYI. We're all in Ravenswood now. Priced/strollered out"

This made me laugh. Whenever I had to explain what I missed about my hometown here in London, I used to always Chicago was the ultimate neighborhood city, and only a place like Chicago could have a Swedish/Lesbian/Hispanic neighborhood. I hope I'm not out of date

My people were old swedes/norwegians who used to make the annual christmas dash back to Clark every year. And last time I was there, my friend was looking after his 18 month old there.
posted by C.A.S. at 3:33 AM on January 24, 2012


I used to always Chicago was the ultimate neighborhood city, and only a place like Chicago could have a Swedish/Lesbian/Hispanic neighborhood.

Visit New York, especially Queens.
posted by jonmc at 5:05 PM on January 24, 2012


The Chicago Gang Book was just updated and released this week.

...a compilation and distillation of data and material provided by the Chicago Police Department and 81 law enforcement agencies in the outskirts of Chicago. The book includes descriptions of the leadership, structure, operations, clothing, tattoos, hand signs, graffiti markings, videos and social networking materials of the most prominent gangs in Chicago.
posted by heyho at 10:35 AM on January 26, 2012


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