A Cacophony of Signs

Chennai_skylineBuildings in India are just as chaotic as our streets. Might is right. There is no place for order and logic. One business will occupy the road facing traffic and put up the gaudiest sign imaginable. Every signboard has to have an in-your-face quality. Subtlety it passe. The next sign will appear over and above the first one and try to trump the first occupant in size if not in scope. Weeds on the side, over and above every building are accepted as Indian characteristics.

It's only the walls of glass that appear to have won the battle. Concrete can be hammered and nails pounded into any part. Glass unfortunately, does not offer the same ease. The new IT parks and office complexes have tamed the beast. But wander into any of the old areas within any city and the old laws apply. Right from Broadway in Parry's to Ranganathan Street in T Nagar, the signs tower all the way to five and six floors. It is impossible to identify individual signs. They are meant only for the company that puts them up. They jut out at every conceivable angle, thumbing their noses at civility and creating a chaotic mosaic. Somehow, the understanding that strategically placed and well-designed signs do more to enhance the image of the company is lost in the melee


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