National Park Service

Re-unifying the kingdom

With millions of visitors every day, nps.gov is the main communications tool for the National Park Service. In 2009, we began working with NPS to address the inconsistency across nps.gov. Because the site is managed by hundreds of people using dozens of technologies, nps.gov had multiple personalities.


A stronger family resemblance

In 2012, NPS and Threespot launched a modernized aesthetic system for nearly 400 individual parks. We also enhanced persistent site features, improving the overall wayfinding experience.

Results

Our new park aesthetic was featured in the keynote presentation at the 2012 Apple Worldwide Developers Conference.


A system that plays well together

As our work for NPS continues, we are focusing on key audiences and their needs, assessing their priorities and the relevance of content. All work is being ideated and developed within a component-based, flexible, consistent design system. We are also creating an enterprise-wide publishing model.


Commemorating the Civil War

The Civil War Sesquicentennial (2011-2015) marks the 150th anniversary of the bloodiest war in U.S. history. The microsite paints a nuanced picture of the war from diverse viewpoints, such as soldiers’ wives and the international perspective. A “Then and Now” timeline points out the parallels between Civil War events and modern-day ones.

Results

Shortly after launching in February 2011, the microsite landed a 2011 W3 award (gold, government category).


Tweets from the battlefield

For the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, we helped NPS bring a Twitter character to life. Through the Civil War Reporter (@CivilWarReportr), followers can “experience events as they happen” through archived articles, images, and ongoing commemoration events.

Results

As of November 2012, @CivilWarReportr had more than 2,500 followers.


Versatile by design

In 2012, we launched the Civil War Subject site, which is serving as a model for future NPS campaigns and commemorations. The site’s features were designed to be applicable to potentially hundreds of other thematic NPS sites.


A site worthy of America’s Best Idea

NPS was excited to be the focus of the 2009 Ken Burns documentary, The National Parks: America’s Best Idea. We designed a website and timeline that introduces NPS through colorful stories and rich visuals, encouraging users to delve deeper into why the national parks were truly America’s best idea.

More Case Studies

  • American Association of Poison Control Centers
  • Amnesty International USA
  • BBC America
  • The Brookings Institution
  • Civil War Trust
  • Knight Foundation
  • National Park Service
  • Peace Corps
  • Planned Parenthood
  • Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
  • Smithsonian
  • U.S. Department of State