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I spent my childhood less than a mile away from Clifton Square, a charming cluster of Victorian-style houses nestled among towering oak trees and bustling with local businesses. I have vivid memories of those visits—my brother and I strapped into our mom’s 1990 Oldsmobile station wagon, making our way to the “old lady fabric stores.” Patience was a challenge as we waited while my mom shopped. Sadly, this was my lasting impression of Clifton Square for quite a while.

Until recently. 

With the addition of Dempsey’s Burger Pub and Ziggy’s Pizza the square has begun to reintroduce itself to the city of Wichita. In fact, a new generation of Wichitans are making this square a regular place to visit for food and other shopping. With the recent purchase of the square, by a young group of entrepreneurs, a new vision has brought life to this historic part of the city.

With that said, here are our goals for the new brand developed in conjunction with Gardner Design:

1. Bring in customers.

We started by creating a fresh new logo for the square in order to raise a flag and say, “Hey! Take a new look at us!” The logo is designed with a modern aesthetic bringing new life that also pays homage to its heritage and unique qualities. Next, we used the aesthetic of the logo to create a new sign. One that brings new energy and raises the quality of the square.

2. Tell their story.

With every brand, we have the opportunity to tell a story. This story makes Clifton unique and builds a strong brand foundation. In Clifton’s case, the group of houses represent the diversity of businesses found here. Look close and these shapes are also birdhouses. Why birdhouses? As you enjoy your pizza on the patio of Ziggy’s, look up and you’ll find a parallel world of birds enjoying the large oak trees above you. Look closer to see people represented by the circles and diamonds, while the color palette gives an essence of celebration and fun.

3. Build the brand.

With a distinct color palette, pattern and logo to draw upon, these visual elements help build recognition while reinforcing the perimeter, making the square more noticeable. Digital experiences can use this visual language to build consistency among the different touch points their audience uses. All of this used together, in a consistent manner, builds layers of brand equity.

4. Attract great tenants.

Clifton Square is seen by some as a temporary solution for new start-ups. Once a tenant reaches success, they look for a more preferred location. By raising the aesthetic of the logo and signage, and by increasing visitors, we’re building value into the square. This will attract and retain our desired tenants.

It’s time to revisit Clifton Square. Or experience it for the first time. You’ll find a truly unique place for local foods and businesses. But I promise you, it won’t be anything like the “old lady fabric stores” of the past.