PH’s horrible commuting situation inspired this new typeface
The Commute typeface by Plus63 Design Co. mimics the endless and tedious everyday situation for commuters
Nov 18, 2019
Art is everywhere. There is inspiration to be found even in the most mundane things—even in traffic. As Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said: “be creative.”
And so this design studio did.
Plus63 Design Co. made a typeface inspired by the worsening public transport system of the country, which launched last weekend at “Tipong Pilipino” typography exhibit at the newly-opened creative hub Escolta Exchange.
Part of the 10 custom typefaces created by local design studios, Plus63 Design Co.’s Commute typeface combines different line weights that allude to the struggles of everyday commuters.
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Commute is a typeface for a city in stasis—a Metro Manila held hostage by its broken public transport system. Cramped, convoluted, and inconsistent, this typeface captures the commuter’s kalbaryo with each winding letterform. Every line is composed of a procession of dots duty bound to make its way to the end…however long that takes. The resulting specimen is more or less a reflection of the roads that trap us daily: difficult to navigate and unreliable in its utility. We developed this display type for the “Tipong Filipino” type exhibit at the Escolta Block Festival.
“Every line is composed of a procession of dots duty-bound to make its way to the end however long that takes,” reads the studio’s description on Instagram. “The resulting specimen is more or less a reflection of the roads that trap us daily: difficult to navigate and unreliable in its utility.”
The typeface is yet to be downloadable for private use partly because it is set only in uppercase making it only suitable as a display font. “Some of its recommended applications include large signs, billboards, and tarpaulin banners next to a half-kilometer road repaving project that lasts eight months. Ten if it falls during the monsoon season,” the studio jokes.
According to the latest report by traffic navigation app Waze, it takes about 4.9 minutes just to drive one kilometer in the nation’s capital making it one of the worst cities to drive in in the world.
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Say Hola to the Escolta Exchange presented by San Miguel Beer! We’re officially opening our incubation space for the Escolta Block Festival’s core ideas this Saturday. This once dormant ground floor of the Panpisco building is now a site for exhibitions, performances, discussions, as well as a venue for like-minded folks to meet and discuss ideas.⠀ ⠀ Take a look at what’s in store for the Escolta Exchange’s inaugural weekend here! ⠀ ⠀ Visit the Escolta Exchange at 246 Escolta St., Panpisco Building. The Escolta Exchange is brought to you by The Manila Creative Exchange in collaboration with San Miguel Beer, the official beverage partner for the Escolta Block Festival.⠀ ⠀ #EscoltaBlockFestival #EBF2019 #EscoltaExchange #EscoltaX
The conditions of the public transport system don’t fare well either. The Light Rail System Line 2 is currently only operational in a few stations after a power transformer caught fire in Katipunan station early October. The government’s answer to public utility jeepney drivers’ cries against the planned Jeepney Modernization Program is to phase out old units and debt-trap them into buying newer models.
The Escolta Exchange is located at the Panpisco Building at Escolta cor. Soda Sts. The “Tipong Pilipino” exhibit is open on weekdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on weekends from 11 a.m. to 12 m.n until Nov. 30.
Header photo courtesy of Plus63 Design Co.
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