It’s official – the City of White Rock has a brand.
Council this week endorsed one of three themes presented earlier this year as a means of defining the city: City by the Sea.
Council members were introduced to the options in late February, when the chair of a task force that formed last July presented the group’s findings.
A West Coast Gem and Abundantly Beautiful were two other suggested brands.
According to a May 30 report by city manager Peggy Clark, the themes were presented at committee meetings, a public consultation and to city employees.
The task force report was also posted on the city’s website with a request for feedback.
My/Our City by the Sea received “overwhelming support,” Clark writes. It was recommended for adoption “because it is inclusive and can be tailored and personalized for any individual, group or initiative.”
It is “built on the past and can resonate with the present and future.” As well, the brand complements the city’s Coat of Arms and flag, recognizes the community as a city “and allows everyone to indicate what their City by the Sea means to them.”
The matter was not discussed before Monday’s vote, which carried with Coun. Mary-Wade Anderson opposed.
In explaining her opposition Wednesday, Anderson said she found the branding “somewhat mundane.”
“It don’t think it’s the spark that White Rock wanted. It doesn’t have a ‘jump’ factor to it,” she said. “I think I was looking for something that was more of a headline – more than just a heart line – about White Rock. It deserves the best title in the world.”
Branding White Rock has been on the city’s agenda since 2001. The first recommendations – “Silver Beach” and “the Island of White Rock” – presented by the U.S.-based firm, Whisper, in 2007, were soundly rejected.
The six-member task force that formed in July to re-examine the idea included a review of the $68,000 Whisper study in their efforts.
In presenting the themes to council in February, group chair Chris Thornley, who also helped rebrand both the City of Surrey and Sources, said ‘City by the Sea’ – which could be personalized with the addition of ‘My’, ‘Our’ or ‘Your’ – speaks to the notion that “sometimes, you already have the answer.”
In her report, Clark recommended citizens, students and organizations be given the month of June to answer the question: What does My/Our City by the Sea mean to you?
The campaign is to be advertised on the city’s website, at city facilities and on the City Page in the Peace Arch News.
In addition to endorsing the brand, council authorized a contract of up to $5,000 be awarded to ThornleyHayne from the city’s economic reserve, to finalize its details. It needs to be worked in with existing elements presently used by the city, such as the wave that appears on city publications; font and colours must also be ironed out, Clark notes.