Urban Systems

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Information Design Work Placement

Company: Urban Systems Ltd.

Location: Calgary, AB

Year: 2014


Recognized as one of Canada’s top employers, Urban Systems is an employee-owned inter-disciplinary consulting firm based in Western Canada. In business since 1975, they have almost four decades of experience working with a variety of clients including all levels of government, First Nations, commercial and residential land developers, and the natural resource sector. The Urban team is over 375 people, across eleven offices. They're committed to helping build vibrant communities of all sizes, both large and small. 

As a Communication Student working for Urban Systems, my deliverables were:

  • Communication Plans
  • Advertisements
  • Invitations
  • Media Releases
  • Reports to Council
  • Policy Documents
  • Proof Reading
  • Copywriting

 Work sample: Information boards designed for Urban Systems' 'OCP in a Week' - a week long public engagement effort aimed at getting the people of Invermere to weigh-in on an update to the Official City Plan. The boards were designed by myself, and were linked to corresponding report to Council. 

Work sample: Information boards designed for Urban Systems' 'OCP in a Week' - a week long public engagement effort aimed at getting the people of Invermere to weigh-in on an update to the Official City Plan. The boards were designed by myself, and were linked to corresponding report to Council. 

 

Vibrant Communities

During my time with Urban Systems, I worked on a number of projects. The work samples I've shown here focus on three main assignments...

OCP in a Week
Invermere, B.C.

The town of Invermere worked with Urban Systems to develop their 30 year city plan. As part of this effort, we executed 'OCP in a Week' - a week long public engagement plan aimed at getting the people of Invermere to weigh-in on the city plan. I created information graphics, collected information and crafted a number of reports. 

For an example of the reports I was tasked with completing, I've uploaded a copy of the final engagement summary presented to Invermere Town Council.

Multi-Modal
Cochrane, AB

This covered the transportation issue in Cochrane, AB. The Town hired Urban Systems to provide consultation toward an update to their transportation infrastructure. I assisted with the public engagement effort - creating interactive boards used at Town Hall sessions, collecting and analyzing data and crafting the report to Council. 

This project also ended in a report to council, again in the form of an engagement summary. Have a look at the full report here or scroll down for a few examples of graphics and deliverables.

Renewable Energy
Cochrane, AB

Cochrane is also trying to become more sustainable - as they work with Urban to develop plans for the future, my task was to compile information into a single document. This report is quite complete, covering months of public engagement efforts and reporting. 

Though this project didn't involve the same level of data analysis, I was responsible for writing, structuring and displaying the information in a formalized report. There are graphics and styles throughout the document.

 

OCP in a Week - Invermere, B.C.

The town of Invermere worked with Urban Systems to develop their 30 year city plan. As part of this effort, we executed 'OCP in a Week' - a week long public engagement plan aimed at getting the people of Invermere to weigh-in on the city plan. I created information graphics, collected information and crafted a number of reports. This section provides a few examples of that. 

 Working with Urban Planners, I got to make infographics about things like affordable housing. Here's a process shot. 

Working with Urban Planners, I got to make infographics about things like affordable housing. Here's a process shot. 

 This was designed as a mail-out on behalf of the Mayor of Invermere - it was distributed both by post and by e-mail.

This was designed as a mail-out on behalf of the Mayor of Invermere - it was distributed both by post and by e-mail.

 
 Many of the boards I created asked the public to interact - in this example, residents of Invermere were invited to show us the places they love most. All of this data eventually found its way into the engagement summary.

Many of the boards I created asked the public to interact - in this example, residents of Invermere were invited to show us the places they love most. All of this data eventually found its way into the engagement summary.

 
 Another interactive poster board, this time asking residents to tell us how they get around.

Another interactive poster board, this time asking residents to tell us how they get around.

 
 In all cases, my job was to find ways to collect information and then find ways to present that information back to the Town. Some of the boards were fun, like the one you see here. 

In all cases, my job was to find ways to collect information and then find ways to present that information back to the Town. Some of the boards were fun, like the one you see here. 

 
 Another board, this one intended to capture verbatim commentary. These comments were analyzed and discussed in the final Engagement Summary. 

Another board, this one intended to capture verbatim commentary. These comments were analyzed and discussed in the final Engagement Summary. 

 
 Using the verbatim comments collected during the public events, I developed information graphics like the one shown here.

Using the verbatim comments collected during the public events, I developed information graphics like the one shown here.

 
 All of the boards, though content heavy, were aimed at delivering valuable information to the residents of Invermere. 

All of the boards, though content heavy, were aimed at delivering valuable information to the residents of Invermere. 

 

Multi-Modal - Cochrane, AB

This assignment covered the transportation issue in Cochrane, AB. The Town worked with Urban Systems toward an update to their transportation infrastructure. I assisted with the public engagement effort - creating interactive boards used at Town Hall sessions, collecting and analyzing data and crafting the final report to Council. 

 The job was well suited to the Information Designer - my job was to analyze and present information. Here's an example of a project timeline included in the final engagement summary.

The job was well suited to the Information Designer - my job was to analyze and present information. Here's an example of a project timeline included in the final engagement summary.

 
 I helped to plan and execute a survey - eventually entering the results into a matrix. Through analysis of the data, themes emerged. I presented these themes in the final report. 

I helped to plan and execute a survey - eventually entering the results into a matrix. Through analysis of the data, themes emerged. I presented these themes in the final report. 

 

 

Renewable Energy - Cochrane, AB

Cochrane is working to become more sustainable - as they work with Urban to develop plans for the future, my task was to compile information and format into a single document. This report is quite complete, covering months of public engagement efforts and reporting. There are graphics and styles throughout.