Minneapolis heading toward approving new single-sailboat logo after all

After many twists and turns, the Minneapolis City Council Committee of the Whole today recommended approval of a new single-sailboat city logo, clearing the waters for a final vote Friday.

Even one of council's most outspoken opponents of the logo tweak, Council Member Andrew Johnson, acknowledges that at this point it seems adoption of the redesign is inevitable.

"I think a lot of us [initially] had the reaction of, 'we don't want to deal with this, period -- there's nothing wrong with the logo as is,'" Johnson tells Fox 9. "We have more important things to deal with... Why fix what's not broken?"

But staff argued that the city's old logo wasn't being used consistently on city documents, so they proposed a single-sailboat redesign with a tweaked font and color scheme.

Council, however, rejected the proposed redesign last month, and directed staff to invest time on a redesign that preserved the dual-sailboat look. But according to Johnson, in response to that direction, staff said coming up with another redesign would take at least a month, so they instead came back to council with the same design that had already been rejected.

That design was approved by the committee of the whole today.

Johnson was one of the nay votes. He says he doesn't buy staff's claim about how much time putting together another redesign would take, as he claims to have designed a tweak of the logo along of lines of what council had in mind by himself in about 10 minutes yesterday.

"I think this creates a dangerous precedent where a legislative body says, 'staff, do this,' and staff doesn't do it," Johnson says.

Nonetheless, Johnson expects the redesign to receive final approval Friday.

"I don't expect any more drama," he says. "The council already looks silly as it is."

But Johnson argues that in seeking more consistency, staff is actually going down a path headed in the other direction, because while items like city stationary will feature the new logo, less modifiable things like manhole covers will continue to be adorned with the old two-sailboats emblem.

"I can foresee somebody five, 10 years down the road saying, 'If we only put in about $50,000...,'" Johnson says.

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