The Merchandise Mart exterior identification
The Merchandise Mart inlay floor
The Merchandise Mart kiosk
The Merchandise Mart kiosk detail
A comprehensive environmental graphics and wayfinding sign program was designed for Chicago’s famed Merchandise Mart, the world’s largest wholesale building and design center, which serves over 100,000 employees, daily visitors, and residents in the immediate neighborhood. Built in the early 1930s, The Merchandise Mart was renovated by the New York-based architectural firm of Beyer Blinder Belle.

As a part of the comprehensive renovation and restoration of this 4-million-square-foot complex of showrooms, retail areas, and office space, new branding and graphic identities were created for The Merchandise Mart, as well as it’s new retail center, The Shops at the Mart, and a new food service area, The Mart Food Court. Great effort was taken to incorporate the original Art Deco design vocabulary of the building’s detailing into all new graphic and sign elements.

In addition to the exterior and interior environmental graphic requirements for The Merchandise Mart, The Shops at The Mart, and The Mart Food Court, retail tenant design standards manuals that outline graphic design criteria for retail storefront graphics, signs, awnings, and banners, as well as for other sign elements throughout the complex, were also part of the design team’s scope of work.

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The Merchandise Mart

Environmental Graphics
Print Media


Chicago, Illinois


Merchandise Mart Properties


Richard Poulin

Publications and Recognitions

Designing and Planning Environmental Graphics (Madison Square Press)