Canada Water Dockside

Canada Water Dockside’s identity shows a different side of life in London

Created by SomeOne, the new place branding celebrates the area’s eclectic mix of everything from workspace to woodlands

While communities historically formed organically, more recently development companies have adopted a ‘build it and they will come’ approach to place branding – often with varying degrees of success.

Located in south east London and part of the city’s former docklands, Canada Water has undergone a huge amount of development in the last few years. In 2019, Southwark council signed off on a new masterplan for the district, which includes 53 acres of new homes, workspaces and additional public space.

Following on from DixonBaxi’s overarching branding for the area in 2021, SomeOne has revealed the identity for new commercial quarter Canada Water Dockside, a five-acre site encompassing everything from workspace to woodlands.

Developed in collaboration with ArtInvest, the strategy behind the place branding is rooted in the fact that Dockside boasts some of the best air quality levels in central London thanks to its waterside location – making it a space for people to “flourish”.

Working with 3D artist Liam Pitchford, the studio created a series of “visual botanical playgrounds” that showcase what the area has to offer, including botanical architecture and unconventional city-based activities such as fishing and paddleboarding.

A flexible and ever-changing logotype is seen throughout the new branding, and is accompanied by Bagoss by Displaay Type Foundry as the primary typeface.

A library of Dockside illustrated mascots have been created by Arcade Studio, with each character highlighting a different activity that is available to visitors and residents, ranging from gardening to yoga.

Iconography was another key consideration for the design team, given that it plays such an important role in helping people navigate both physical spaces and a variety of printed and digital experiences. Initially use functionally on maps and signage, the work has also evolved to include supergraphics in playgrounds and other community areas.