Liverpool City Council gears up for Capital of Culture 2008 by appointing designers

Liverpool City Council is to create its first graphic design roster as the city prepares to become the European Capital of Culture in 2008.

A group of up to 12 international design consultancies will be appointed to work on a range of projects across the organisation, producing graphics for communication, marketing, on-line and exhibition materials. The council has a remit of five key portfolios for the local community, which consist of: central services, children’s services, supported living and community safety, regeneration, and resources.

Last month, the council put out a formal tender notice for the work, and it is now undertaking a ‘second-stage process’ to draw up a roster shortlist. It expects to make a final selection within four months. The contract will be reviewed in two years’ time.

Liverpool City Council has an internal design team, but the roster will ‘provide more flexibility’, says a council spokesman.

‘This gives us a formal footing and external options. There will be a pool of organisations we can draw on,’ he adds.

Previously, external graphic design consultancies worked with the council on a much more ad hoc basis.

Liverpool is embarking on one of the biggest regeneration schemes that is currently taking place in Europe, investing £3bn in redevelopment to boost the region ahead of 2008. Major projects include the £920m retail complex development Paradise Project and a £390m Kings Waterfront scheme, featuring an arena and a conference city.

European Capital of Culture 2008

• Liverpool’s status as Capital of Culture could bring in an extra 1.5m visitors and generate up to 14 000 new jobs.

• Ongoing projects: a City Centre Movement strategy to improve access around the city; a new cruise liner facility at Prince’s Dock to attract major liners.

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