San Francisco Studio Landscape Creates Identity For Disability-Inclusive Housing Startup, The Kelsey

Posted inBranding & Identity Design
Thumbnail for San Francisco Studio Landscape Creates Identity For Disability-Inclusive Housing Startup, The Kelsey

Everyone makes a big deal about how the only certainties in life are death and taxes. But you can really add a few more to that list—the staying power of the eternally incredible Dionne Warwick, the Cleveland baseball team never winning another World Series, and sky-high rents in San Francisco.

Well, you might finally be able to strike the steep cost of rents in the city by the bay, as they have come down recently due to COVID and the recession. However, if anyone is deeply familiar with those enormous prices, it’s the non-profit organization The Kelsey. In just two years, they’ve helped secure the development of 240 homes in a complex and onerous housing market. Additionally, they advocate for inclusive housing for folks with disabilities, ensuring that they create a resident-centered experience where the community can thrive.

Recently, The Kelsey launched a new identity and website. Working alongside San Francisco design agency Landscape, the refreshed branding perfectly frames the non-profit's mission and celebrates their commitment to inclusivity and developing long-lasting housing solutions for low-to-middle income adults with disabilities.

And that’s a mission worth honoring. Over 4 million adults with disabilities rely solely on Supplemental Security Income. And that means they are priced out of not just the housing market in San Francisco but every other market in the county. In fact, 125% of that SSI income would need to go to housing, all the more reason that organizations like The Kelsey must thrive so that sustainable housing can get procured.

Landscape focused their design around the theme of “building opportunity through inclusivity," as their work impacts folks from all walks of life, including adults with disabilities. The new identity balances vibrant illustrations with humanistic photography. They based the color palette used throughout the design on skin tones and utilized a universal typeface to reinforce these ideas.

“Design – which includes language – can play a critical role in making complex social topics accessible to broader audiences,” said Adam Weiss, creative director of Landscape, in a press release. “But, as importantly, good design also makes these topics easier to act on for everyone, inspiring more diverse groups of people to participate in positive social movements or changes. In the case of The Kelsey, designing for inclusivity also meant designing for and with people who have disabilities. Our team worked with disability advocates and external consultants to ensure that the design of the brand and site, from the user experience to colors, images, and words, was designed to be as accessible as possible to people with a broad range of abilities.”

“We design buildings that are representative of their community, welcoming to everyone and best-in-class; our brand should do the same,” adds Micaela Connery, co-founder and CEO of The Kelsey, in the same press release.

“Too often beauty is dictated and is reserved for the select few, and not inclusive of the communities they serve," she added. "We don’t believe that should be the case.”