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In order to expand its transit services to include a specialized para-transit division, the City of Thunder Bay launched an strategy to grow off of the already established infrastructure, HAGI Transit. Thunder Bay Transit enlisted our help to develop a fresh new Brand Platform and Identity to reflect this new initiative and shift the perception of the service in the eyes of its users.

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We quickly decided that our aim for this project was two fold. One, we wanted a name that broke free from the traditional way of institutional thinking. It had to explain the service at first glance, but most importantly, be fun and friendly. And secondly, we needed the name to be “future-ready”. The para-transit division was just one arm of a larger transit system. The name needed to be accommodating for when the rest of the services were ready to catch up. We landed on the name “Lift +”.

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The name was one thing, we also needed develop a Brand Platform around a simplified ideal; a clear cut goal to aspire to. As always, this ideal should answer the existential question, “why are we here”? So naturally, we structured the platform and creative development around one passenger-centric philosophy – “We get people where they need to go”.

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Just as we preach to our clients, one idea leads to another and then another… and then another. Before long, the Brand Platform we developed inspired a series of initiatives and tools that enhanced the transit rider’s experience. From a refreshed NextLift app to more streamlined scheduling/wayfinding system, creativity and strategy have worked together to build a Thunder Bay Transit brand that can go toe to toe with any big city.

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