In an effort to reclaim public spaces which are in some way worn out and have become unsettling to look at, Brigade recently collaborated with The Ugly Indian (TUI) for a social initiative. The Brigadiers, along with the team from Holiday Inn Express, Race Course Road, and TUI have refurbished a large part of Anand Rao Circle flyover. The project, part of Brigade Group’s CSR activity involved cleaning thoroughly the defaced walls of the flyover and painting the walls.
The walls of the flyover then saw a beautiful art in the form of Kudremukh (horse face), being painted on where the art forms were a skillful combination of geometric shapes. One part of the Anand Rao Circle flyover directly faces the Holiday Inn Express property.
More than 50 of the hotel staff volunteered in the refurbishing along with hundreds of enthusiastic citizens who also lent a helping hand. This initiative also saw active participation and involvement of the local MLA and Corporation.
The objective is to aesthetically uplift the flyover through art besides physically cleaning it to prevent public from defacing its walls with graffiti and posters and prevent it from being used for littering and even as a public urinal. The activity will be carried out over weekends, involving a few hundred volunteers.
Stated The Ugly Indian, “We believe in direct action, with a common-sense problem-solving approach. We do not finger-point or blame the system. We aim to make a change from within – one that sustains because everyone wants it and is comfortable with it.We believe that there is no magic wand, or silver bullet, to solve India’s civic problems. This effort, however small, is a stepping stone in changing the mindsets of the people of the city.”
As for using art to uplift the spaces, TUI added, “it is a question of altering behavioural patterns. A beautiful space by itself acts as a deterrent to defacement. By cleaning up and bringing in art, we are not only lending beauty and pride to our landmarks but also altering the approach public currently has towards public spaces and their maintenance.”
The theme for the painting of Kudremukh (horse –face) is not only inspired by the location housing the race course but it was also suggested by Brigade Hospitality which initiated the project. In short, the design was custom made to enrich the location visually and provide a thematic resonance.
This flyover initiative has been followed by a second phase cleaning and beautification involving the area under the flyover where volunteers cleared the spaces and later hardscaped and planted vegetation. Attractive seating was also placed, with the space now currently serving as an attractive destination for those seeking a short rest, those who would like to make their calls and for even a few informal meetings.
“The design for this segment was chosen based on low maintenance. Taking up the space under the flyover was done to showcase to the public the possibilities that prevail in our dead spaces, be it BBMP empty sites, spaces under the flyovers or even traffic islands. These are areas that can be cleaned and spruced up to provide seating to weary travelers who currently do not have such resting spots”, said TUI.
Commenting on the CSR activity Pavitra Shankar, Vice President, Brigade Group says, “This is an initiative as part of the company’s corporate social responsibility. The reason for picking this space for sprucing up was the potential Brigade Hospitality saw in turning this unused area into an active public zone, besides aesthetically painting an important landmark of the city that has hitherto served merely as an eyesore. We hope this initiative will enable public to see the potential of our unused public spaces and traffic islands, dead spaces under the flyovers as well as understand how aesthetically pleasing it is to see public walls filled with art rather than posters and graffiti.”