Toronto Flag

Is the Toronto flag ready for a redesign?

I'm rather ambivalent about the Toronto flag - sometimes I don't mind it, other times I think it looks dorky, and most of the time I just don't think of it at all. But, as I was driving through Forest Hill earlier today I saw one blowing proudly in the wind in front of someone's house, and now I've been half thinking about the design for the better part of the day.

Originally selected by city council via a competition in 1974, Toronto's flag is the work of Renato De Santis, who at the time was a 21-year-old George Brown student. When the city amalgamated in 1999 another competition was held to find a replacement, but after none of the submissions were approved, De Santis's flag was retained with minor modifications.

The question could be asked why the city needs a flag in the first place -- it's not as if it's used in a whole lot of Toronto branding -- but I'm more interested in what people think about the design. TTC logo re-branding attempts have been relatively popular, but aside from a National Post competition back in 2006 (with the grand prize of a coffee mug, no less), I haven't heard of any efforts to re-jig our flag. And that's both a bit of a shame and a surprise.

See, the funny thing about TTC logo redesigns is that the original is already quite strong. I'm not really sure such a thing can be said of our flag. It's not terrible by any means, but it's also not particularly captivating or pride-inducing. And, as that competition back in 2006 noted, what's with the Maple Leaf? It just doesn't seem to fit with what is otherwise pretty bold city hall-inspired imagery.

What do you think of our flag? And, of course, if anyone is feeling productive (or bored) enough to whip up new version, I'd be happy to post it. I could probably even come up with something slightly better than a coffee mug.



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