THE THIRD RAIL
The Third Rail is the first recognized New York City FC supporters group.
The group’s name refers to the method by which the New York City subway system is powered, where the train wheels run on two parallel tracks and a third rail running alongside provides the electricity. The Third Rail is the electricity that powers NYCFC on the pitch from their boisterous fan section in the bleachers of Yankee Stadium.
The supporters group hired me to design a full identity system. Primary and secondary marks were applied to apparel and merchandise that is now recognizable in New York and in stadia across MLS when the traveling support hits the road.
New York City’s art deco architectural heritage was my main inspiration for The Third Rail identity. From the Chrysler Building to the interior of Grand Central Station, striking deco styles are seen and felt throughout the City.
But perhaps even more important to the Third Rail identity is a statue called The Genius of Electricity. The 16-ton bronze statue, which lived in lower Manhattan for nearly a century, depicts a winged man holding three lightning bolts. I decided to make this the focal point of this supporters group’s logo.
Replicating the color palette of the Football Club, The Third Rail logo and accompanying supporter regalia of flags and scarves are instantly recognizable as the electricity which powers the players.