People & Purpose
Anchored by its striking flagship building (The Ion) off Main Street in Midtown, Houston’s new Ion District capitalizes on our city’s entrepreneurial ethos and legacy of ingenuity to introduce a sixteen-acre innovation corridor in the heart of the city. Our charge has been to create an identity system for a mixed-use district spanning ten years and twelve blocks of development, helping guide and inspire partners and visitors through the exciting, evolving, and often ambiguous landscape of “innovation.”
- Verbal Identity
- Visual Identity
- Website Design
- Print System
- Presentation Materials
- Brand Guidelines
- Campaign Development
- Kudos NYC
- Acacia Originals
By creating a dense environment ripe for skill-building courses and serendipitous encounters, financial capital and fluid green and gathering spaces, the District catalyzes the development of ideas, technologies, and businesses that push our world forward. And, in the process, offers Houstonians across all sectors and skill levels a thriving place to live, learn, work, play, and prosper.
Steve Jobs once remarked that “creativity is just connecting things.” The linework of the identity system is built around concepts of connection and pathways—those critical moments of connection that link people or ideas or opportunities, and the District’s role in acting as the conduit and catalyst for those moments to take place.
Small + Large Image
All are welcome here.
Large + Small Image
In the heart of their headquarters (the Ion building), the District showroom brings the brand line-work to life in built form, extending from the logo and weaving around the room, doubling as a shelf, and directing attention to the renderings and (eventually) 3D model that showcases the District’s planned phases and exciting potential to investors, partners, and other audiences—whose “better way” can begin right here.
One of our mottoes throughout this project has been to “make innovation mean something.” A flexible system of panels introduces a modular device that visually and verbally plays off the brand line (Every better way needs a place to begin.)
The goal is to weave together actual examples across the District that showcase the wonderful variety of forms “innovation” can take—juxtaposing dissimilar industries, the large and the small, physical products and less tangible concepts—to help people understand what’s happening here… and invite them to view themselves as a future participant in building the world they want to see. Lines can be concepted for general placement around the District, or, as is the case for the panels outside their Greentown Labs partner, tailored to a specific context.
The Principle team has been a joy to work with. They built the Ion District brand and did a great job, especially given that the process was done in a virtual world and involved a range of interested stakeholders at various points. The team understood the ethos of our investment and development, its ties to the future of Houston, and what that all means for Rice and the Ion. They pushed back when appropriate but also allowed us as the client to steer when needed. As far as brand identity, language, and visuals, Principle is awesome! And most importantly, they are simply really good people—lots of integrity.