There have been lots of exciting changes in the past month with the CoSign project. We officially launched a second round of CoSign in the Northside neighborhood with a ‘Call to Artists’ and a ‘Call to Businesses’. CoSign chose to focus on the Northside neighborhood for a second round to develop a critical mass of signs in a community. Northside is a perfect community for this project because of its walkability, unique array of businesses, strong business association, and invested and diverse community. In the pilot project that took place last fall, we learned a lot about the process and structure of the program. In this round we want to see the influence of additional signs on the economic vibrancy of an area.
We are also exploring how to measure our impact. As we look to national expansion, we want to convince a community of the economic value of signage for the neighborhood and its artists. We have lots of anecdotal information – artists that told us their livelihood has improved since CoSign as they are now regularly commissioned to design signs, business owners sharing the positive impact of their new sign on their sales and consumer foot traffic, community members reporting they never knew a business existed before the installation of the new sign. We are working on how to capture that information and show numerically and concisely the scope of our impact.
We were fortunate to receive some local press this month.
• CoSign hired a new project manager, Erica Bolenbaugh, to oversee our efforts and ensure program success
The value of creating a diverse team where everyone plays a distinct but not overlapping role – our team has artists, community members, an engineer, a city planner, a graphic designer, a historic preservationist, and a project manager. All of these roles come together seamlessly since everyone brings a level of expertise that others don’t have. We are able to do a lot of independent work and meet rarely for decisions that affect all parts of the team.