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Style Guide

About the Style Guide

The mission of the City of Takoma Park style guide is to promote the use of consistent language and style in City generated web and print materials. Aligning the written and visual output of Takoma Park’s various departments helps us make content that is accessible to all of our stakeholders.

The public presentation of the style guide keeps decisions about the creation of government content transparent and offers the opportunity for input—suggestions are welcome! This also gives City staff a chance to show our work and detail how we make our decisions. We encourage browsing and making use of the tools contained in the style guide when working with Takoma Park. Adoption of style guide decisions by our partners helps further Takoma Park’s ability to serve its residents and partners.

The Style Guide is currently a work in progress. As style decisions get made they’ll be added to the guide and implemented.

The Takoma Park Style Guide: # through S

A

Addresses

Use the AP style. For numbered addresses, use figures. Abbreviate Ave., Blvd., and St. and directional cues when used with a numbered address. Spell out other words such as alley, drive and road.

If the street name or directional cue is used without a numbered address, it should be capitalized and spelled out. If a street name is a number, spell out First through Ninth and use figures for 10th and higher. (Source: AP Stylebook via the University of Utah’s Writing Style Guide)

Citywide

We often do work that has a citywide impact. No hyphen needed. (Source: AP Stylebook via Purdue Owl Writing Lab)

E

Email

Use email with no hyphen. The other form is old school and we are trying to be new school. (Or, at least, current school.)

P

Pepco

Going by their website the utility seems to prefer Pepco and not PEPCO. (Pepco is an acronym/shorthand for Potomac Electric Power Company.)

S

Sentence Spacing

Use one space after a period. Period.

The Takoma Park Style Guide: T through Z

T

Takoma Park Community Center – Sam Abbott Citizens’ Center

The Takoma Park Community Center – Sam Abbott Citizens’ Center is located at 7500 Maple Avenue in Takoma Park, Maryland. The building serves as a hub of civic life in Takoma Park and functions both as a community center and city hall. It contains both community amenities (meeting rooms, auditorium, art galleries and recreation program space) and municipal government offices. The Takoma Park Police Department is located on the first floor of the Community Center. The Takoma Park Maryland Library is directly connected to the Community Center.

First mentions in newsletter articles, press releases, mailing list emails and long form web posts should use the full formal name on first mention of the building. Web pages or catalog entries detailing the building itself should also adhere to this presentation style. Subsequent mentions can use the more informal “Community Center”. Use “Takoma Park Community Center” if the municipal name is still needed to reinforce the geographic location.

Social media posts or blog posts where character limits or cut lines are important should use the informal term “Community Center.” Online calendars and event promotion tools should use “Takoma Park Community Center” when describing the location. This is in line with search engine results from Google and Bing.

Telephone Numbers

Use figures with hyphens, not periods. No spaces or parenthesis needed. Always include area code. Omit 1 to indicate long distance. Example: 301-891-7100. If an extension is included, use a comma to separate the telephone number from the extension and use the “ext.” abbreviation: 301-891-7100, ext. 7236. Wherever possible include HTML links when phone numbers are presented on websites the City of Takoma Park owns or manages.

No rules are presented or needed for international calling. HTML links should include the +1 in the hyperlink (Example: <a href=”tel:+13018917100″>) to ensure telephone number links work on as many devices as possible.

Time

Use twelve hour formatting. Time listed should be followed by a single space and capital letters to signify ante meridian or post meridian. Examples: 8:30 AM or 3:45 PM. Noon and midnight should be referred to as 12:00 PM and 12:00 AM respectively. This formatting keeps us in line with popular online calendar tools and the code that powers sections of takomaparkmd.gov.

Short form social media posts can use a single lowercase letter and omit zeros for times that start on or span the hour. If events span noon or midnight both an “a” and “p” should be included: 5p, 8:30-10a 11a-1p.

The Takoma Park Newsletter uses AP Style a.m. and p.m. to display times. Sometimes we post newsletter articles to the website (and sometimes we remember to change the times to the website style.)

Typographic Alignment

Don’t use justified spacing for standard (e.g. legislative) documents that will be presented on the website. In most cases left-alignment is preferred.

U

Underlining

Never. Some implementations of the website will add underlines to links automatically but underlining should never be used to emphasize text. Use bold text instead.

W

Web, Webpage, Website

Website is one word. No capitalization needed. We like our new website. It is full of great webpages. We sincerely hope Takoma Park residents find it a great resource for local information on the web.

Communications Sections

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City Council & Mayor Blog

Check out the City Council & Mayor Blog for news and updates from Takoma Park's Councilmembers.

The City Council and Mayor provide regular updates to help keep residents in the loop on what is new with Takoma Park!

Check it out!
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Broken Parking Meter?

Broken parking meter? Email parking@takomaparkmd.gov, call 301-270-1100 or use the My TkPk app.

For more information on parking in Takoma Park visit the Parking Information page.

Parking Information