Some things don’t fit into the usual categories. We made these projects for the community, for events, for us—and for you.

Reopening Signs

We made these signs for restaurants and stores starting to open in the wake of COVID-19.

Local businesses are finding ways to serve the community while trying to help everybody stay safe. These colorful signs are a small gesture that any establishment can use to say they’re open—and happy to see you, but please wear a mask, etc. You can download a printable PDF here.

Just Ask Around

We think it can be easier (and more fun) to get information from people than your phone.

Metropolis magazine asked us for new ideas for wayfinding in “the ideal city.” We came up with an old idea: a public service campaign to remind and encourage people to access the information that’s already all around them. If you need to know something, why not just ask around?

Metropolis: ”Open believes in continuously reinventing itself. Yet it doesn’t always look to the future; sometimes the old way of doing things is the best. Its wayfinding system for our new city isn’t technological. Open suggests that people who are lost in the city do something unusual—ask someone for directions.”

Economic Facts

We wish every product told you its own story.

If you’ve ever been to a store and wondered where something comes from, who helped make it, and/or why it costs what it does, we’re with you. The Nutrition Facts label helped people make informed choices about their food. The Economic Facts label would help people make informed choices about their money.

Give and Take

We want to make a panel truck into a community center.

As part of their “Upside of Down” Strategy Session in San Diego, CEOs for Cities asked Open to think about how to improve life in cities in bad economic times. Inspired by the rise of food trucks, we created the Give + Take Machine, where everybody can trade time, stuff, and/or ideas with everybody else.

Carol Coletta, vice president for community and national initiatives, the Knight Foundation: “When you see a charmer of an idea like the Give and Take Machine light up the faces of mayors and corporate CEOs, you know it’s been a good day. It was one of the earliest tactical urbanism proposals and still one of the best.”