When GBBN Architects asked us to be part of the design team for the total renovation of St. Aloysius’ historic campus in Bond Hill, we said yes. St. Aloysius has been a Cincinnati landmark since the early 1800s and has a rich history. Starting as a safe haven for German-speaking children orphaned during the cholera outbreak in 1832, St. Aloysius has a long history of serving the community and its children. In the 1980s, St. Aloysius Orphanage began to focus on responding to abuse and neglect. Today, St. Aloysius is a non-profit that uses evidence-based treatment strategies to help children, individuals, and families in need. St. Aloysius provides a network of community- and evidence-based services to provide the necessary tools to make those in need feel cared for, valued, and safe.
Taking its cues from the stone design utilized in the original building, we developed a grid system that would inform everything from printed items to environmental graphics. The system uses physical size, color, and orientation as visual cues to the message type and audience. This new branding provided a clear structure that clarified St. Aloysius‘ messaging on everything from digital marketing to environmental features.
In the hallways, wall-mounted graphics blend educational, history, and program messaging with interior wayfinding and aspirational images. Tailored messaging on each floor provides area-specific content based on function and audience. In the lobby, multiple colorful “paper airplanes” break away from the structure of the grid system to take off into the sky. The bright and joyful sculpture represents the hope and possibility St. Aloysius offers to those who walk the halls.
Our design system centered and organized St. Aloysius’ brand story. Custom sculpture, murals, and wayfinding all created a unique experience for students and staff. At the same time, print and digital design templates gave them a cohesive way to tell their brand story. In addition, we increased communication effectiveness through consistency, simplicity, imagery, and targeted messaging, allowing St. Aloysius to cast a wider net while speaking to the correct audience.