CGA on Philadelphia Rail Park Project

Reading Viaduct

Cloud Gehshan Associates (Philadelphia) is designing graphic and interpretive enhancements for the Reading Viaduct Project, a reclamation of abandoned rail tracks that will become Philadelphia's version of the High Line.

The Reading Viaduct has been abandoned since the last train traveled its rails in 1984. Soon it will be transformed into an elevated rail park, a ribbon of green with spectacular views of the Philadelphia skyline.

As a reclaimed public space, the park will bring diverse communities together, contribute to surrounding neighborhoods and preserve the Callowhill Industrial District, which is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Both the Reading and Pennsylvania Railroads transported coal and commodities that fueled the nation’s Industrial Revolution and westward expansion. The park represents the heart of American railroad history, and CGA's goal will be to celebrate its rich legacy and enhance the visitor experience. The CGA design team is working with Philadelphia's Center City District, Friends of the Rail Park and Studio Bryan Hanes on the project.

(Rendering: Courtesy of Studio Bryan Hanes)



Applied Wayfinding Receives Queen's Award

Dongdaemun Design Plaza wayfinding signage (Applied Wayfining and YiEUM Partners Consortium

Applied Wayfinding (London) is a recipient of a 2016 Queen’s Award for Enterprise, the highest business accolade in the UK, in recognition of its outstanding achievements in international trade.

In its work creating user-focused wayfinding systems, Applied has worked all over the world. Over the past year alone Applied has worked in 10 countries across five continents, delivering innovative and award-winning projects. Exports now account for 80% of the firm’s turnover.

Founded in 2003, Applied first won international recognition as the architect of Legible London, which set the global gold standard for city wayfinding systems. The business has successfully expanded into other sectors,
including transportation, large-scale mixed-use developments, university campuses, retail malls, airports, public parks and museums. At the same time, Applied has increased its global reach and developed expertise in
digital mapping.

At the heart of Applied’s approach is an interest in how people think and behave, says Tim Fendley, Applied partner and creative director. This interest informs planning, design and implementation. The firm of four
partners and 30 experts works collaboratively with each client to discover needs and apply a set of proven principles, in order to create unique wayfinding solutions that integrate seamlessly into the local environment.

"We are delighted to receive this award in recognition of the global reach of our design firm," notes Fendley. "As experts in urban information design, we are proud to represent great British creative talent overseas. As a small, independently owned practice, this award means a great deal. We are delighted to have our work recognised and look forward to continuing to contribute to excellence in wayfinding on an international stage." 

Applied is based in London, with offices in New York, Vancouver and Seoul. Current engagements include signage and urban information strategy for Edmonton, Alberta; wayfinding for the City of Cleveland, Ohio; transport
information strategy for Toronto; large mixed-use developments in Hong Kong, New York and Abu Dhabi; city-wide wayfinding strategy for Rio de Janeiro; major new ground-up cities in Columbia and Qatar; signage for Zaha Hadid’s Dongdaemun Design Plaza in Seoul; and wayfinding for the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

In celebration of this prestigious award, Applied will attend a reception at Buckingham Palace and a special awards ceremony later this year, in which the firm will be presented with the Grant of Appointment and a ceremonial crystal bowl.

Photo: Applied Wayfinding. Wayfinding signage for the Zaha Hadid-designed Dongdaemun Design Plaza,Seoul, South Korea (project in collaboration with YiEUM Partners Consortium)


Envision Designs Donor Recognition for Mount Sinai Hospital

Mount Sinai Hospital Donor Wall by Envision

Envision (Toronto) created the new state-of-the-art digital donor recognition system for Toronto's Mount Sinai Hospital.

The new installation, unique to Canada in its size and complexity, recognizes hospital supporters from the past 94 years. Standing 50 ft. long and 12 ft. high, the digital canvas spans 21,000 pixels wide.

As part of the "Renew Sinai" redevelopment project, Envision worked closely with the Sinai Health Foundation to design, build and install a digital donor recognition system that pays homage to the thousands of donors whose generosity has supported the hospital from its humble beginnings to today.

“We are privileged to be working with Sinai Health Foundation on such a significant design project and proud of the work we've accomplished,” says Mark Wilson, Envision executive vice president. “The foundation wanted to create something architecturally and technologically outstanding to express their gratitude to their many donors.  The wall acts as the central art piece within the revitalization of the whole main floor lobby. The end result is a combination of artistry and technology on a whole new level. In our many years of donor recognition work, this is the largest and most complex project Envision has ever completed, both in terms of its scale and technical sophistication.”

With more than 10,000 people circulating through the main lobby corridor at Mount Sinai Hospital every day, it was crucial for the final creation to include movement of content that was soft, flowing and conveyed a sense of tranquility within the space.

“We involved many stakeholders in the design process, including architect and interior design experts as well as some of Sinai Health Foundation’s top donors, to ensure the end result was the best fit for the space,” continues Wilson. “Our overall goal was to create a relaxing and soothing environment for anyone visiting the hospital.  At the same time, the final piece needed to make a strong modern statement. Our starting point was to establish a philosophical design principle built from a harmonious relationship between components of shape and functionality, producing the desired emotional state we were striving for.”

“This wall surpasses our expectations and makes such a significant contribution to the hospital’s landscape,” says Tony di Cosmo, vice-president, donor relations for Sinai Health Foundation. “When we embarked on this project with Envision, our main goal was to recognize the incredible generosity of our donors. What we didn’t expect was the dynamic work of ‘living’ art we would have in the end. The wall blends donor names with moving images, messages and stories. It is an ever-changing piece that has brought an entirely new level of art form to this hospital." 

The video wall creates an immersive ultra high-definition experience using 33 NEC X series commercial displays, with 65-in., 4K screens on each end for messaging and promoting upcoming events. It represents the largest single machine installation of Touch Designer software in North America based on a pixel count level (content is generated in real time at 23,040 x 3,240), powering the 33-screen main video wall. A state-of-the-art content management system and next-generation hardware enables Sinai Health Foundation members to create customized content and upload to the system in real time. The main fixture construction of white Corian and glass, together with LED accent lights and stainless steel trims, allow the installation to blend seamlessly into the hospital's newly renovated architectural environment. It is located in the hospital's main floor lobby from the University Avenue entrance.



Carbone Smolan Adds to Leadership Team

New Leadership Team at Carbone Smolan Agency

Carbone Smolan Agency (New York) added directors of design, strategy, client relationships and engagement to its leadership team.

Justin Peters, Dave Mowers, Jill Wittnebel and Dave Weinberger will manage new growth across the agency. 

“The unique perspective and passion of each new member of the leadership team is setting us up for a very exciting future,” says Managing Partner Paul Pierson.  “Working together with myself and Founding Partners Ken Carbone and Leslie Smolan, we are further positioning the agency to help people and organizations define what success means in this rapidly changing world.” 

As Executive Creative Director, Justin Peters is responsible for the creative vision of the agency. Justin has also served as Global Creative Director at Siegel+Gale, where he led engagements with Google, HP, Aetna, Ingersoll Rand, Motorola, Tata Consultancy Services and Rotary International. Peters has a deep understanding of international markets and cultures, making him uniquely qualified to serve CSA’s growing global clientele.


To lead the Strategy Department, CSA has tapped Dave Mowers as Executive Director of Strategy. With over two decades of experience as a professional theater, film and television director, Dave is skilled at telling stories about a brand’s value and its impact on the world. By creating and leading a myriad of workshops, he enables clients to problem solve in new ways, tapping into their creative energy to discover powerful solutions.   

Jill Wittnebel has been promoted to Executive Director of Client Relationships. Her deep experience leading client engagements at Rockwell Group, Gensler and previously as an account director at CSA make her ideal for this role. A true collaborator and charismatic relationship-builder, Wittnebel ensures that all of CSA’s client experiences are seamless from beginning to end and are focused on a long-term vision.

Completing the new leadership team is Dave Weinberger, taking on the role of Executive Director of Engagement. Dave will lead all new business, marketing and PR efforts. His time spent at multiple brand agencies as a creative director has ingrained the belief that design is a powerful problem-solving tool that enriches how people experience and connect to the world around them.

The leadership team will build on the agency’s focus of designing enduring brands for a changing world, helping brands and organizations evolve and grow while staying true to who they are. CSA will continue to create identities, design, content and digital experiences that help brands thrive in their markets.


Pentagram's Natasha Jen Creates FailurexDesign

HarvardxDesign conference identity by Natasha Jen (Pentagram)

The Harvard Graduate School of Design got a two-fer when they booked Pentagram Partner Natasha Jen as a keynote speaker for the 4th annual HarvardxDesign conference. Jen also created the identity for the conference.

Themed “FailurexDesign,” this year’s conference focused on the role of productive failure in design. Jen’s identity features type that trips over itself to form striking patterns on conference materials.

Jen and her design team set the identity spinning across applications including the website, posters, programs, totes and pencils. The team precisely calibrated the “fall” and rotation of the letters in the logotype, set in Futura Bold.  When the letters aren't rolling over, they slip, slide or appear generally unstable, and a giant “X” crosses out the conference t-shirt. The color palette features an alarming shade of red, balanced with black and white.

See more of the FailurexDesign identity on the Pentagram blog.



P + M Develops Environmental Graphics at Vassar College

Donor Recognition at Vassar College (Poulin + Morris)

Poulin + Morris (New York) developed the environmental graphics, donor recognition and wayfinding sign program for Vassar College's new Integrated Science Center.

Vassar (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.) recently opened the 157,000-sq.-ft. center, which is comprised of both new and renovated buildings and features the newly constructed Bridge building, which serves as a link to all the science facilities on campus. The 82,000-sq.-ft., LEED-Silver certified Bridge features the latest scientific equipment and resources for students and faculty including several research labs and a fabrication facility.

Poulin + Morris worked closely with the college to develop a comprehensive environmental graphics, donor recognition, and wayfinding sign program for the Center. The program includes building, public space, laboratory, lounge, and classroom identification, as well as directional, informational and regulatory signs.

An architecturally integrated donor recognition wall in the Bridge building's main lobby features vertical panels displaying individual donor names. The panels align with the wooden slats of a 16-ft.-long wall, while their varying dimensions and alternating placement on the wall create a compelling textural effect. In other parts of the center, dimensional letterforms display additional donor names, while water-jet cut, stenciled aluminum panels provide room identification.



Digital Signage Federation

Digital Signage Federation

Author Hussain Ali will be a panelist on the DSF’s April “Hangout” discussion entitled, “Digital Signage and Environmental Design,” on Wednesday, April 13 at 2pm EST. More information on this and other DSF events can be found on the DSF website. Both DSF members and non-members may join this or any of the DSF’s scheduled Hangout discussions for free – but registration is required and can be accessed on the DSF website at  Hussain Ali, Principal of Houston Dynamic Displays (HD2) is a seasoned information technology veteran whose passion for digital signage has led to award-winning architectural lighting designs among other large projects. His primary focus is turn-key custom digital signage integration and consulting through HD2 while hoping to impact the digital signage industry by thinking beyond the box of digital signage software and implementing customized, efficient and user-friendly digital signage solutions that have not been seen before.


Marcel Machler Completes Carving at LA Courthouse

Federal seal at LA Federal Courthouse, by Marcel Machler

Marcel Mächler (Twin Peaks, Calif.) recently completed a major milestone in the stone-carving work at the new federal courthouse under construction in downtown Los Angeles. Mächler is working in close collaboration with Skidmore Owings & Merrill, the architect of the building. He hand-carved a 4.5-ft.-diameter federal seal as an 1.5-in. deep bas-relief in Indiana limestone. The carving was executed as a first-in-place, on-site creation and took nearly six weeks. The master stonecarver and scultor recently completed other projects at the Orange County Performing Arts Center (Costa Mesa, Calif.), Crystal Bridge Museum of American Art (Bentonville, Ark.) and Soka University of America (Aliso Viejo, Calif.) You can track project progress on the LA federal courthouse project on Mächler's Twitter page.



Cash Heads SloanLED

Ervin Cash, SloanLED

SloanLED (Ventura, Calif.) named Ervin L. Cash as president, chief executive officer and member of its board of directors.

Cash brings more than 27 years of strategic, international business growth acumen to the role, having previously served as CEO for AERCO International and Bosch Thermotechnology NA Corp.

“We welcome Mr. Cash to SloanLED and are eager to have him take the helm of our internationally expanding investment in LED lighting,” says Scott Hoffman, operating partner, Baird Capital. “His global expertise with driving corporate growth is exactly what’s required for SloanLED at this time.”

Cash has extensive experience in energy‑efficient technologies, managing operational complexity in both national and international corporate environments, with expertise in applying appropriate growth models, developing new go‑to‑market channels and reducing complexities to achieve results.

“I am thrilled to join SloanLED and look forward to advancing the growth initiatives underway. We will hold fast to the company’s 60‑year heritage of innovation, customer service and high-quality product while pursuing new business development and channel diversification,” says Cash. “Our company has expansion opportunity in the global LED market as demand surges for efficient and reliable solid state lighting solutions.”

Cash holds an MBA from Xavier University, a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Kansas and a BA in Communications & Human Resources from MidAmerica Nazarene University. He completed post‑graduate studies at Harvard Business School’s executive education program. He currently serves on board of directors for the Alliance to Save Energy.


Cody Clark Promoted to VP at CallisonRTKL

Cody Clark, RTKLCallison

CallisonRTKL (Baltimore) promoted Cody Clark, head of the firm's Los Angeles environmental graphic design studio, to vice president.

The announcement came as CallisonRTKL named Kelly Farrell, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, senior vice president and global practice group leader for workplace, and also promoted 90 others in the global firm to vice president positions.

Cody Clark, LEED GA, leads the environmental graphics studio in the firm’s Los Angeles office. He has worked on comprehensive wayfinding systems, identity and signage for virtually every project type, from multi-family residential and mixed-use to retail centers and entertainment districts.