• THE ASK

    The Detroit Blight Authority helps remove blight and restore neighborhoods to their true potential. Our challenge was to create an online experience that effectively engaged citizens and communicated the mission.

A CLEAN SLATE

In a time of bankruptcy and serious financial challenges, Detroit metro area residents weren’t entirely convinced about spending money on neighborhood restoration. The Blight Authority needed to capitalize on a renewed spirit of entrepreneurialism and community service in order to get citizens engaged and involved. It began, as it often does, with a request for a website.

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  • THE ANSWER

    Give the people the power to transform a city block—and show how those blocks can add to up to a brighter future for Detroit.

EXPERIENCE THE SPIRIT OF DETROIT

Our first task was to provide The Blight Authority with an identity. We created a new logo based on the iconic “Spirit of Detroit” statue found in the center of downtown.  We then set out to show how a dilapidated, depressing past could transform into a brighter future. The resulting community-driven website defined the problem of blight, clarified the process of cleaning it up, and urged people to make a personal donation to help end blight.

But more than that, it let each user interact with the site content in a unique, experiential manner. As urban detritus is removed by the user, a new hopeful Detroit grows even stronger. By visually showing the transformation along with the physical steps that go into the removal, we could tell a story that inspired action.  Seeing is believing.

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  • THE OUTCOME

    The Blight Authority program was lauded across television, newspapers, and online—in Detroit and beyond.

SPREADING THE HOPE

Site engagement—our primary task—increased dramatically with this launch, with more than double the previous page visits, five times more time spent on site, and half the bounce rates vs. their initial web presence. The mission even caught on, with other cities looking to make a positive change in their aging infrastructure, resulting in a new contract to help remove blight in another nearby Michigan city. In addition, since launch, The Blight Authority received commitments from various companies ranging from $6,500 to over $400,000.

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  • Recognition

    Optimism won the day when The Blight Authority’s aspirational new website was honored with several prestigious awards.

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