City of Phoenix

A Case Study

Most Tattooed City Brand

Phoenix was among the first municipalities in the US to recognize the value of their city as a brand. This began with a new logo and identity for of the City. Its iconic name served as the logical basis for a new logo.


Introduce new brand identity and communicate the descriptiveness of the City’s name and all it represents.



Leverage the positive heritage and perceptions of America’s 10th largest city (at the time). Consolidate the unregulated use of various derivations of Phoenix-like logos used across many city departments. Create brand standards for consistency, continuity, and cost management.



The logo design was selected from among many that were submitted by a handful of design firms from Arizona and out of state. Four finalists were presented in the newspaper and the public voted their favorite. A comprehensive graphics standards manual followed and eliminated the use of 12+ unauthorized variants across many City departments, thus saving $50,000 alone in the first year. Today, the City of Phoenix logo is among the most recognized municipal logos in the US and has become a cultural icon.