Detroit Neighborhood Entrepreneurs Project:
The Lunch Brake
About The Project
The Detroit Neighborhood Entrepreneurs Project (DNEP) is an initiative that pairs an entrepreneur from Detroit with a team of senior Graphic Design students, Law students, and Master of Accounting students at the University of Michigan. Our team met with Achsha Jones, the founder of The Lunch Stop.
The Lunch Stop is a “bus-taurant,” that started 10 years ago as a catering business. Today, it’s an opportunity to combat food deserts and to improve the lunch experience for thousands of workers at large industrial companies located in areas without many options. She has also created a way to support local Detroit businesses by buying food from brick and mortar food entrepreneurs in Detroit, stocking her bus, and driving it out to these plants, where workers are invited to board the bus, buy a hot meal, and enjoy the small break they get each day.
She voiced several challenges to us, including how to create an inviting atmosphere on a bus, how to be a triple-bottom-line business, making a profit while being both socially and environmentally responsible, and how to better present her business.
Design team: Paige Wilson, Alison Burnell, Juli Polise, Lilly Lee, Hannah Klapper,
Sara Ciaramella, Madeline Helland, Carla Borkman
Our first visit to Achsha's Bus
After our initial meetings to understand her business goals, personal goals, and challenges, we identified three main areas to address:
- Brand development and application, including a new name
- Experience and Spatial Design, in regard to the bus
- Website Design and Marketing Collateral
Our team of eight designers decided how we would break up the tasks, worked through persona creation and experience mapping, and a long brainstorming process to start us on the right path to find a strong name to build a brand and experience around.
Our name brainstorm led us to around 100 possibilities, and we narrowed them down to six options. We were looking for something that was friendly and bold, while also appropriately referencing both the food and automotive aspects of her business. With these six, we began to sketch visuals and pair them with tag lines to see if any of the options would stand out. After many iterations, our team and Achsha felt that The Lunch Brake was the right choice.
We consulted with the law students about different copyright issues and began to refine the logo and build an identity.
As we neared a final logo and the last month of the semester, we broke off into sub teams to tackle our list of deliverables. The time we spent on our process early on allowed our team to fully understand where we were going and made applying the brand and creating other collateral a much easier task.
To the right is the final visual identity as it was presented to the client. The color choices, pattern, and iconography were chosen as we moved into applying the brand to packaging and signage.
When we broke into smaller teams, I worked with another designer to create versatile packaging options for Achsha. We started with understanding the variety of food options she planned to accommodate. She was mostly planning to use Styrofoam bowls, in as many sizes as she needed. We created a chart comparing different compostable or recyclable options and their prices for Achsha before beginning to design for sustainable options rather than Styrofoam.
Due to the different types of food, we concluded that a colored labeling system and stickers were the best way to apply the brand to all of the food options, while also allowing her to label the food for different dietary restrictions. The sticker option allows her to print labels for common foods, while being able to write in options for the less frequent items.
Other Final Deliverables
Here are the rest of the deliverables my team and I produced and presented to Achsha.