Wake County

Artichoke City; Windows 95: Raleigh reacts to city’s new logo

Here’s Raleigh’s new logo. Is it worth $226,000?

The city paid $226,000 for the new logo. What do you think?
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The city paid $226,000 for the new logo. What do you think?

Mere minutes after Raleigh’s new logo was unveiled Wednesday afternoon, people were, of course, arguing about it on the internet.

Some hated it. Some liked it. Some didn’t care – they just wondered about the cost.

Raleigh paid a total of $226,000 to two firms to research a branding strategy and design a logo. The effort also yielded a mission statement, a vision statement, two fonts to be used across city government materials and a nifty video to introduce the new logo.

Raleigh isn’t the only Wake County city to go searching for a recognizable logo. Morrisville paid about $125,000 for its recent rebranding effort, and Fuquay-Varina paid $95,000. Apex solicited logo submissions from residents and paid the winner $500.

In Raleigh, the new logo will be implemented gradually to replace a hodgepodge of existing insignias. This way, residents can easily identify whether a program is backed by the city.

“We will only use the new image when things need to be reordered, like uniforms or signage,” Damien Graham, the city’s communications director, said in a text message. “As we have needs for new brochures, business cards, etc., we can use the new image, but the cost is neutral.”

Here’s a sample of what folks had to say about it.

Some thought it had a sinister, corporate vibe.

It reminded at least one person of how Raleigh’s recent mayoral election divided Raleigh between east and west.

The lack of oak-specific imagery was a problem for some people, but not everyone.

The logo reminded some people of a bank.

Or an artichoke.

Or an homage to Raleigh’s thriving beer scene.

Some had kind words.

Despite the price tag, the logo still struck some as low-budget.

And in case Raleigh changes its mind, a couple of people were happy to supply alternatives.

Henry Gargan: 919-829-4807, @hgargan