Urban Omnibus, an online publication dedicated to defining and enriching the culture of citymaking, published a feature on Partner & Partners, the graphic design firm behind the Curb Your Litter project. In an excerpt from the interview-style feature, the designers discuss the thinking and inspiration behind the Curb Your Litter identity:
Is there a current project you’re particularly excited about?
Kathleen: We’re working on Curb Your Litter, an anti-litter initiative through the Greenpoint Chamber of Commerce. They’re doing the first ever waste and litter analysis for Greenpoint — collecting and categorizing litter to see what the issue actually is — to then potentially put new cans where they’re most needed. And they are getting the community to help out, because residents walk the streets every day and know the issue best.
We came up with an identity for the initiative, and we’re just starting the wireframes for an interactive map and database that will show the problem areas and embed a way to request trashcans and recycling bins. We’re getting 311 data, so the map will feature reported can overflows, rat sightings, dirty sidewalk reports, and other things like that for a very localized area. Right now that data doesn’t seem to be acted upon; it just kind of disappears after people call it in.
Greg: Like some of our others, this project deals with the city as a system, and this time with the perception and taboo around waste. Making an identity around a project that’s explicitly dealing with trash is not that easy. The logo is someone putting trash in a can, but it’s playful in a way. We also put a seal around it so it feels official but is still visually accessible to the community.
Zach: We’ve also begun to think about Curb Your Litter on your phone and what that could bring. One thing Caroline Bauer, who’s running the initiative, needs right now is documented evidence of the issue. So an app might ask the user for a picture of the problem, then allow them to say what kind of can, recycling or trash, would help where.
Kathleen: Once the actual analysis is complete, we can brainstorm creative ways to address the causes. A Norwegian friend of mine recently mentioned that her city government painted footprints onto the sidewalk leading to each trashcan. It actually worked; people would follow the footprints and throw their trash away. We’ve been talking about some other graphic ways to encourage people in a similar way.
Read the full feature here.