CEPF “Green Pedestrian Crossing” by DDB, Shanghai

Simplicity is lovely. Here is a simple strategy executed using simple creative to delivery simply amazing results. Simple.

The China Environment Protection Foundation (CEPF) commissioned this piece of work from DDB, Shanghai which earned unprecedented results and won awards at the Effies and D&AD to name but two. Here is the campaign taken from the DDB website:


“Green Pedestrian Crossing” (More Walking, Less Driving)


China Environmental Protection Foundation


DDB, Shanghai


40% of carbon monoxide emissions come from cars. According to China’s Ministry of Commerce; the country is now the world’s largest car market with over 500 million vehicles on the road. This is without a doubt having a huge impact on the environment. China Environmental Protection Foundation wanted an attention grabbing tactic to urge everyone to do their bit for the environment. They asked people to walk more, and drive less. An outdoor advertisement on the street was used to push this message.


DDB Shanghai decided to leverage a busy pedestrian crossing; a place where both pedestrians and drivers meet. They lay a giant canvas of 12.6 meters long by 7 meters wide on the ground, covering the pedestrian crossing with a large leafless tree. Placed on either side of the road beneath the traffic lights, were sponge cushions soaked in green environmentally friendly washable and quick dry paint. As pedestrians walked towards the crossing, they would step onto the green sponge and as they walked, the soles of their feet would make foot imprints onto the tree on the ground. Each green footprint added to the canvas like leaves growing on a bare tree, which made people feel that by walking they could create a greener environment.


The Green Pedestrian Crossing was carried out in 7 main streets of Shanghai and later expanded to 132 roads in 15 cities across China. A total number of pedestrians that participated exceeded 3,920,000 people. Key media both online and offline rapidly wrote about the campaign. According to research, the overall awareness of environmental protection had increased 86%. After the campaign, the print was exhibited at the Shanghai Zheng Da Art Museum.

Take a look at the campaign video below:

China is such a rapidly growing market and it’s so exciting to watch it develop work which challenges us on the other side of the world. At it’s core, the idea was to visually show how walking is better for the environment than taking a car. Utilising a pedestrian walkway, forcing the target audience in their cars to stop, was simple and inspired; the law was actively aiding engagement with this campaign ensuring that a captive audience were had to witness the birth of the ‘advert’. Having people’s footprints build the green foliage of the tree is lovely and its exhibition at a Shanghai Art Museum is a wonderful final touch to crown a cleaver, strategy-based campaign.

Chief Creative Officer : Michael Dee

Creative Director : Jody Xiong

Copywriter : Jason Jin

Art Director : Jody Xiong

Agency Producer : George Ooi

Photographer : Keno Zhao,King Zhang

Planner : Jenny Liu

Film Production Company : Green Spot

Director : Qiu Bo

Film Producer : Gemini Wong


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