MassDevelopment’s Transformative Development Initiative (TDI) is a program for Gateway Cities designed to accelerate economic growth. TDI needed a visual identity for vacant storefront properties throughout these downtowns. The aspiration was two-fold: to beautify these storefronts and thus improve the quality of the street, and to market these spaces as ideal homes for active programs like a restaurant, maker space, or dance studio.
OverUnder developed a vibrant language of color, text, and texture as a set of design guidelines that could flexibly be applied to many types of storefronts. The goal was to attract passerby attention and force them to consider the value of having exciting activity in underutilized space. The design guidelines controlled for a number of parameters: opacity, word choice, color, and material.