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The Chicago Design System (CDS) is the design system for the people and government of the City of Chicago. It has been produced by policy-makers, technologists, designers, visionaries, and more–all people like you.

Work began early in 2018 as a unique collaboration between the Mayor’s Office, the Department of Innovation & Technology, and the Department of Fleet and Facility Management. Team leads Grace Cheung, Danielle DuMerer, Alberto Ferrari, and Jason Kunesh worked in pro bono partnership with Ogilvy’s Chicago office and local type designer Patric King of House of Pretty. Throughout the process we have relied upon partners inside and outside government to make this work.

Thank you!

A special thank you to Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot for seeing value in and sponsoring this project despite its humble origins.


This work would not have been possible without Cara Bader, Derrick Brownlee, Grace Cheung, Maurice Classen, Michael Crowley, Danielle DuMerer, Douglas Hurdelbrink, Emily Krisciunas, Jamey Lundblad, Daniel Lurie, Stacey Mansker-Young, Carleton Nolan, Han Nguyen, Tim Samuelson, and many, many more at the City of Chicago. Thanks to Mayor Rahm Emanuel for originating this project and requesting someone like me be hired to work on 311 and this effort.

In any project spanning two years and administrations to get to version 0.9, a village doesn’t cut it. It takes a city.

Thank you, Chicago, for all you are and all you can be.


I’d like to dedicate this work to Dan & Gail Kunesh, my parents, and Lora Kovac, Sophia & Vivian Kunesh, my wife & kids. My parents taught me through their actions that faith, hope, and love move the world. I’ve done my best to keep that wisdom alive for the next generation.