Brand Urbanism

Virtual Downtown Running, Sponsored By Nike

With a little help of creative agency BBH Singapore, an entire city block in Manila has been taken over by Nike with the construction of a giant running track.

The running track, called Unlimited Stadium, has the shape of an enormous 100-meter long sole print of Nike’s Lunar Epic shoe. With a 200-meter track lined with LED-screens, the Unlimited Stadium fuses virtual and physical worlds. As a runner, you can run against an avatar — your virtual self. During your first lap, you set your pace. From there on, your avatar with run with (or against) you on the digital LED screens, challenging you to push your limits and improve your running.

Nike Unlimited Stadium

Nike Unlimited Stadium

Nike Unlimited Stadium

This Nike-sponsored running track is a good example of what we would call brand urbanism. It is not the first time Nike sets up and sponsors (branded) urban projects, as is shown by Portland’s BIKETOWN and Nike Barge — a caged football pitch (also in Manila) launched just before the FIFA World Cup in 2014.

Trend

Brand Urbanism

A growing number of consumer brands are investing in the city, working together with cities to find solutions for urban issues. In a time of austerity, brand urbanism provides local governments with more possibilities in realizing ambitious projects, while giving brands a one-off opportunity to show their involvement in and responsibility for the city.

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