As a relief for those searching for streets in the city, the Greater Chennai Corporation will conduct a 45-day drive to identify damaged signboards in 34,588 streets in its limits, including those under the Highways Department. The GCC will also place boards to indicate public and government spaces soon.
At the general council meeting presided over by Mayor R. Priya with Commissioner J. Radhakrishnan, V. Ramesh, Councillor of Ward 82 in Zone 7 (Ambattur), during the question hour requested the civic body to revamp signboards as many are old, damaged, and rusted and some stickers are completely worn off. “Of the roughly 420 streets within ward 82, only about 50 have proper signboards,” he said.
Adding to this, Deputy Mayor M. Magesh Kumaar suggested that the names of respective ward councillors could also be mentioned in the boards similar to those in a few municipalities in several districts of the State.
GCC Commissioner J. Radhakrishnan, acknowledging the issue, stated that the digitally printed stickers are to be changed every five years and the Corporation will ensure presence of signboards for 34,588 streets under the Singara Chennai initiative in its limits, including for those in some important locations under the Highways Department.
“It is among the fundamental duties of the Corporation to provide identification for the streets. Instead of expecting funds to be allocated [by the State government] under a specific initiative, taking it up on our own will be more appropriate practically,” he said.
It is to be noted that the Corporation in 2021 identified 30,000 boards that needed replacement. The GCC took up the work in a phased manner and completed over 8,000 boards in January at a cost of ₹8.7 crore. Further, the civic body also informed that those found damaging signages and digital street nameboards would be fined and booked. The progress so far has not been notified by the GCC, nevertheless.
Dr. Radhakrishnan said, “It has been 7-8 years since the boards have been replaced. The boards are slanted and some areas lack the facility. In 45 days, a drive will be undertaken. Earlier, there were boards with the names of the Councillors in the stickers and similar arrangement would be ensured.”
“Likewise, ward-wise boards indicating public toilets, government offices like those of Corporation Assistant Engineers, Chennai Metro Water Supply and Sewage Board and Electric Board will be installed,” he further stated.