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The Design Office works to make city services more accessible and inclusive for Chicago residents. We bring user-centered design methods to teams working to improve the lives of Chicago residents both inside and outside of the city government, and we engage with residents to create better technology experiences for everyone.

How We Work

The Design Office uses human-centered design methods to develop digital experiences and services. Our Chicago Design System Methods are a catalog of the Chicago way of development and production. These are the services we currently offer, and have been adapted from the federal design process. Creating a well-designed, user-oriented product is of utmost importance, and as such our methods are focused around that goal.

See our Design Methods


The Design Office has advised on a number of large-scale projects involving digital services design. With help from the Design Office, the City of Chicago has launched a digital 311 service and created a new municipal brand.


Internal Consulting

One of the roles of the Design Office is to help other departments within the City of Chicago bring user-centered design practices to their processes and products. The Design Office shares resources and methods with other teams and might be brought in to consult on a project. If you’re a City of Chicago employee interested in help improving resident experiences with digital services, you can reach out to the Design Office.

In the past, the Design Office has:


The Design Office works with outside organizations to support design in the City of Chicago and to improve the lives of residents. We have partnered with ThinkChicago, Design for America, and local universities to innovate around city services and to foster a local civic design culture.