News Flash


Posted on: April 21, 2023

Frisco hires global design firm IDEO to create vision for Grand Park

(April 21, 2023) The City of Frisco is taking ‘next steps’ to make the greater Grand Park a reality.  But those next steps will move a little differently – and at a faster pace.  

“We’re taking an ‘out of the box’ approach,” said Shannon Coates, Director of Parks and Recreation.  “We’re partnering with global design company, IDEO, known for its innovative workstyle.  Together, we’ll be designing a vision for Grand Park. We’ll focus on the users’ experience.  We want to consider not only what the park looks like – but what it feels like. The good news is, we’re not starting from scratch.  We plan to review all the ideas residents have shared over the years about what they’d like to see at Grand Park.”  

IDEO has practiced, what it calls, ‘design thinking in action’ for more than 40 years.  It’s geared to use design methods and tools to solve challenges. IDEO has designed spaces and engaging environments around the world including Boston Harbor Islands National Park, IKEA and The Today Show at Rockefeller Plaza.  IDEO even helped Ford reimagine its F-150 and is credited with designing the first computer mouse for Apple.  

Collaboration on Grand Park will begin May 1 and span the next four months. The project starts with seven weeks of, what IDEO calls, a ‘rapid design sprint’.   It involves reviewing the city’s work done to date, which includes residents’ feedback collected over the years about their ‘wishes’.  Community needs will also be considered.   

Next, IDEO will create an Experience Blueprint, which includes: 

  • ‘Evergreen’ design principles reflecting the values, needs and desires of residents, businesses and employees. Such design principles inform policy, landscape design, spatial and programming decisions.
  • Experience Journey, Spatial Zones and Concepts which may include user journeys, park zones and how proposed experiences ‘come to life’. 
  • Vision Statement and Brand Strategy which includes a foundation for the park’s visual identity, communication and community engagement. 

Then, the IDEO and City of Frisco will host public input sessions in June.   Finally, IDEO will spend nine weeks advising Frisco about implementation. “We couldn’t be more excited,” said Mayor Jeff Cheney.  “The Grand Park project inspired me to get involved in city service.  This is a legacy project that will be enjoyed by future generations.”

Over time, the City of Frisco has amassed 1,000 acres for Grand Park in the heart of the city.  In November 2022, Frisco celebrated the opening of Big Bluestem Trail, a natural, unpaved 12-foot-wide trail that winds its way through undeveloped park land for 2.2 miles.  

The Frisco City Council approved the IDEO contract April 4 of this year.  Stay informed by following @PlayFrisco or @CityofFriscoTX on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram – or check out and find PlayFrisco.

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