Visalia City Council says they’re listening to logo comments

This article was updated May 17 at 4:00pm

The unveiling of the new City of Visalia logo — likely assumed to be relatively uncontroversial — has ended up being anything but.

The introduction of the “modern” logo unleashed a firestorm of ridicule and criticism across social media that ranged from “a five year old could have designed it” to comments on the sum spent to replace it. According to the city council’s August 7, 2023 agenda the logo change cost the city $150,000.

Many commenters wanted the old logo back.

In response, Mayor Brian Poochigian told the Valley Voice that several members of the City Council have expressed a desire to discuss the logo in open session.

To do this, the council asked staff to put the new logo on the consent calendar. Once the item is approved in the consent agenda the item will be put on the June 3 regular agenda.

The May 20 agenda states: “Request to add Consent item by Council – Request by several Council Members to approve adding an agenda item to the June 3, 2024 agenda for discussion and potential direction regarding the new City of Visalia logo.”

Visalia City Councilmember Liz Wynn posted a similar statement on her Facebook page, stating “Visalia! We hear you!” and inviting the public to join the June 3 meeting.


Council listening to BMX, logo comments

On April 1 BMX enthusiast attended a city council meeting and voiced their disappointment in the city bulldozing their track. The BMX track made by local bikers was on city property and was a liability.

Though the city didn’t have a choice about removing the track, they did schedule a listening session and are now in the planning stages of building a permanent BMX track.

The council cannot discuss the logo during the regular meeting until the item is officially agendized but they are open to hearing locals’ feedback during public comment.

Poochigian said that right now there are no plans to change the logo but that the council is always open to hear from residents.


Lack of enthusiasm

The city started the process of researching into a new logo in January or February of 2019 but their efforts were delayed by the pandemic. They restarted their project in March of 2021.

We the Creative (WTC) was awarded the contract for the project in April of 2022 through a competitive bid process according to the city.

To create the logo the city said that “WTC met with the City’s project team, taking tours of the community, conducting roundtable discussions and focus groups that included City Council, City staff, residents, business owners, and staff from other stakeholder organizations.”

During the August 7 city council work session, WTC gave a presentation unveiling five logo options to choose from.

Joven Orozco, Creative Director for WTC started the presentation explaining how the old logo was too dated and did not represent what Visalia is.

He added that the former logo is difficult and expensive to reproduce. A key factor in updating the logo Orozco said was attracting a new and future workforce.

Of the five city council members, none showed enthusiasm about what was presented; Councilmember Liz Wynn said she wasn’t a graphic artist so any one of the five was fine.

Council member Steve Nelson commented that all the elements Visalia needed were in the old logo.

Poochigian said all five options looked like the logo for the Bank of Sierra. He didn’t see anything that “said Visalia” to him except the mountains. Poochigian also did not like the way the Visalia Fox Theater was depicted and that it should be more prominent.

Commenters on social media said the building on the logo looked like Mission Santa Barbara and not the Fox.

In the end, the council voted unanimously to choose the current city logo, presented as Option 5.

Monday’s agenda with the likely consent item concerning the logo will be posted Friday afternoon.

The May 20 city council meeting will be held at 7pm at Visalia’s City Hall Council Chambers, located at 707 W Acequia, Visalia.

3 thoughts on “Visalia City Council says they’re listening to logo comments

(Commenter ID is a unique per-article, per-person commenter identifier. If multiple names have the same Commenter ID, it is likely they are the same person. For more information, click here.)

  1. The new logo is meaningless compared to the former logo. The former logo speaks for itself and why are we wasting money yo change something that isn’t broke.

Use your voice

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *