March 4, 2020

City Announces Launch of New Chicago Design System on City’s 183rd Birthday

City updates iconic design elements, streamlines and enhances continuity across all departments

Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

CHICAGO --- Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot today joined the Commissioner of the Department of Assets, Information and Services (AIS) City officials and project partner Ogilvy to launch Chicago’s new Design System and reveal the new City logo. The announcement comes as the City celebrates its historic 183rd birthday. Among its many new attributes, the design system features a new City lockup, which includes Chicago’s famous star and a custom font appropriately named “Big Shoulders,” a nod to Chicago’s industrial past. 

“I am pleased to be taking a new step in Chicago history by launching a design system that aligns with my core values of inclusivity, accessibility and transparency for our great city,” said Mayor Lightfoot. “Launching this new chapter in our history not only means a fresh look for our City, but it also marks a milestone in ensuring everything we create aligns with our values as a City” 

The new design system focuses on ensuring that people from around the world can more seamlessly recognize Chicago’s communications and campaigns. The new system also puts special emphasis on accessibility and makes the iconic features of the new design system openly available to residents to interpret and use in their own daily lives. 

“This new design system not only makes it easier for people from around the globe to recognize Chicago, but it’s also more accessible for all people to use in their everyday lives,’ said David Reynolds, Commissioner of the Department of Assets, Information and Services. “I am pleased to see the AIS leading such an important project and helping the City to take such a crucial step in its history.” 

This is the first major project to come from the Department of Assets, Information and Services since the City restructured the department to include what were formerly the Departments of Fleet and Facility Management (2FM) and Innovation and Technology (DoIT). The restructuring helped the departments better align with the vision for the City’s asset management model. Combining the departments ultimately led to a more streamlined workflow and $1 million savings in vacancy reductions and additional efficiencies. Through launching this new design system, the City expects to see additional monetary savings through increased efficiencies. 

This project was made possible with help from an Ogilvy team, who worked in lockstep to produce, refine and complete the new designs to ensure they were aligned with the City’s vision and priorities under the new administration. The Ogilvy team delivered a final product rooted in Chicago’s rich history that connects to all residents and visitors alike. 

“We are pleased to have had the opportunity to work with the City to achieve this monumental milestone in the City’s history,” said Gabe Usadel, Executive Director of Design at Ogilvy. “This new design system and branding incorporates community input with the City’s history to deliver a new look and feel that all Chicagoans can take pride in.” 

Chicago joins a small number of cities worldwide that have launched a refreshed look and feel to their design system. For more information or to download the assets to use yourself please visit