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Design Trust Chicago

Nick Adam
Design Direction, Design

Avery Branen

Alex Roper

Design Trust Chicago (DTC) is an emerging, civic impact design studio that connects communities with designers to create equitable and thriving spaces for all Chicagoans. DTC is rooted in the social justice traditions of Chicago and is dedicated to advancing design justice practices. They engage in projects that amplify the value of design through problem-solving and creative processes.

Working with DTC, Span designed and developed the Mapped (Making a People’s Pathway for Engaging Design) website. Mapped is Chicago’s accessible index of community spaces intended to inspire and empower communities to create spaces in their neighborhoods. Mapped users can quickly access budgets, partners, funders, technical information, and other project specifics that can help them better predict costs and concerns. The Mapped website functions as a tool for equity by increasing the visibility of projects by designers of color and amplifying their work. Users can search for projects designed by BIPOC and ALANNA architects and designers, share projects or firms, and suggest projects designed by people of color.

Span’s work was in direct collaboration with DTC and their community of work group advisors. DTC founders Katherine Darnstadt, Elle Ramel, and Paola Aguirre Serrano provided the vision for this community mapping tool. Mapped is an awarded Grantee Project by Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts.

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