City seal gets a makeover

Columbus officials are taking the city’s seal in a new direction, one that Mayor Jim Lienhoop describes as “fresh and contemporary.”

The new blue, green and white seal is Columbus’ fourth version of a city seal, unveiled Tuesday by Mary Ferdon, the city’s executive director of administration and community development.

Ferdon said Lienhoop started talking last year about redesigning the city’s seal to incorporate a more simple, updated concept. The new design includes the familiar “C” and the iconic Robert N. Stewart Bridge, often referred to as the gateway to downtown Columbus.

Also featured on the new seal is the city’s year of establishment, 1821 — the same year Bartholomew County was founded.

“What we tried to do here is something that’s built on the brand we’ve already got,” Lienhoop told the Board of Public Works and Safety Tuesday. “It’s consistent with what the city uses in other branding activities. We wanted to keep it simple.”

The city worked with Todd Dickerson, the creative director of TD Advertising, to design the new seal. Lienhoop said city officials identified what they liked and didn’t like about other city seals around Indiana and used those ideas in Dickerson’s re-design.

Columbus’ original seal included the scales of justice, which Lienhoop said didn’t make sense because “we’re not a court, that’s not what we do here.” The second version of the seal also incorporated the scales.

Lienhoop said the most recent seal was incorporated in 1994 when Columbus was declared an All-American City.

Ferdon said the new seal does not replace the city’s logo. A seal is typically used for more formal occasions, she said.