Three companies bid for street furniture designs

Toronto’s street furniture is about to get a facelift and one of the companies bidding is set on accomplishing an environmentally-respectful design.

The 20-year street furniture contract will be given to the advertising company that gets a recommendation from a smaller group of city councillors, chaired by Mayor David Miller.

Evaluations will be done by three independent judges, along with cost estimates for each of the proposals, which will be reported to the city’s executive committee next month. The three bidding companies are Astral Media, CBS Outdoor Canada and Clear Channel Outdoor Canada. The winning bidder has the right to sell advertising on the street furniture.

“We think Toronto is a beautiful city full of parks and trees, and our goal is to produce furniture that compliments and integrates with these diverse natural elements,” said Scott Brownrigg a media-relations representative for Clear Channel Outdoor Canada.

Brownrigg believes that Clear Channel Outdoor Canada’s proposal compliments the Mayor’s vision of a city within a park and the clean and beautiful city initiative.

‘Local businesses will benefit’

“Just the design of the furniture that we’ve incorporated, for example the bus shelter, is designed with a central support beam with a transparent ceiling with trees on it,” he said.

When it comes to making street-signage ads affordable for local businesses, Brownrigg is certain that Clear Channel Outdoor Canada’s bid will do just that through what is know as secondary advertising spaces that are less expensive.

“Local businesses will benefit directly with a Clear Channel win,” Brownrigg said. “We think that our proposal offers the greatest amount if not all of the secondary ad spaces that will allow local companies to compete.”

According to Brownrigg his company’s design would blend with Toronto’s streetscape and compliment the parks and trees already existing.

“First of all, we were asked to produce something original,” he said. “But there are a lot of trees in Toronto, so we’re trying to focus a design that is as best as it can be.”

Not only is Clear Channel Outdoor Canada’s bid environmentally conscious, it also provides local business with an upper hand the other bids don’t provide, Brownrigg said.

“I think local companies risk (with the other bids) having to face off against national advertisers and money that national advertisers would have at their disposal.”

Representatives for Astral Media and CBS Outdoor Canada refused to be interviewed for this story.