Drum, Birmingham

Drum is the first phase of the repurposing of Grand Central in Birmingham city centre, delivering a world-class workplace and lifestyle destination in the heart of the UK. We created a vibrant and flexible brand, that celebrates not only Birmingham’s unique spirit and people, but Drum’s promise of bringing ‘frictionless living’ to life.

We partnered on

  • Animation
  • Brand idea
  • Branding
  • Interviews
  • Naming
  • Strategy
  • Website
  • Copywriting
  • Hoarding

The ambition

Drum will accommodate up to 2,000 people and will be one of the best-connected offices in the UK. Setting a new benchmark for sustainable development with a retrofit saving around 14,000 tonnes of C02 and with unrivalled train and tram connectivity, and excellent access for cyclists and pedestrians, this is a world-class workplace in every way.

A bold and memorable name and brand was needed to mark a new start at Grand Central, the existing scheme. The brand needed to capture the imagination of people and workers locally and nationally and be truly representative of both the development and Birmingham’s vibrant spirit and personality.


The ideas

We conducted a series of interviews as part of the research stage with influential and leading thinkers from Birmingham who gave a unique insight into the personality of the city and its people. The name Drum was inspired by the distinctive shape of the existing building: a short, strong, evocative name that tonally felt ‘right’ for Birmingham, and one that would reinvigorate interest in the scheme.

The wordmark was influenced by architectural detailing, with bright vibrant colours to capture attention on small digital screens and large formats, and a bespoke typeface designed with geometry matching MAKE architect’s interior vision.

Designed by architects Alejandro Zaera-Polo and Maider Llaguno, the existing Grand Central is encircled in a reflecting and folding stainless steel façade. The ever-changing reflections and distortions mirrored in the materials serve as inspiration for the animation dynamics of the logo, as a fluid and digital-first icon.

We created a bespoke typeface for the logo, inspired by the sweeping curves and arches of the interior designs, created by Ken Shuttleworth’s MAKE architectural practice.

A bold, confident but flexible, brand idea of ‘This is life.’ was created to incorporate different elements of both the development and modern life itself.