Friday, July 20, 2007

Improper use of urban land

This comes as a follow up of Jayati Ghosh's column on "Uses of urban land" in this fortnight's Frontline. She talks about the more-than-needed malls coming up in South Delhi, thus terming it as not a very proper use of urban land.

Most of the development in the urban land is happening in the form of Malls,
Multiplex, IT Parks and Residential townships. Of the above, latter two are justifiable to an extent.
But consider malls and multiplexes. What is the real use of these? Flow of money? Today malls and multiplexes seems to top the list of places where urban population "freak out".
Does freaking out only mean Purchasing things/ spending money/ watching a movie? A well known mall in Hyderabad used to be second home for an ex-colleague and friend of mine. She used to believe in Shop, Eat and Celebrate.

I remember this was not the trend a decade ago, or rather 3-4 years ago. I remember people visiting the nearby park to spend the evening. Other places to freak out included beach, planetarium, museum, zoo, forts etc.

Today there is a segment of urban population, who no longer visit these places
for entertainment. They instead prefer shopping, watching a movie and grabbing a coke and have a combi for lunch/snack, all at the same place - the nearby Mall. Or is that that they enjoy spending money, just because they have more of it?

Is it because the malls are the safest and most convenient places to visit?
Probably cool dudes prefer taking their sweethearts to such cool places, since the crowd at these malls is also cool. They could feel that places like beach, the multiple class cinema halls (the huge ones comprising of A class, B class and balcony, ideally not located in malls), parks are generally inhabited by rogue stags like me, who they think might be a possible threat to their relationship. Or they probably think rogues like me indulge in certain unconstitutional activities. Actually what they do not understand is such places are most safest for them and people like us are the safest. Anyway people like me are chronic stags, and we have been like that since birth, so there is no chance of your girl getting attracted to us!

I understand that mall phenomenon has taken over only a minor segment. But consider the amount of urban land taken over by them, right at the heart of the city, making it usable only by that niche segment of urban population.

Postscript: Contrary to the author, the reader might still prefer to choose a mall/multiplex over planetarium/museum/zoo/fort to "freak out". Remember, the author is still single and has given up looking.(the tragic end of the single and looking phase).
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1 comment:

spilledbytes said...

Rightly said.. reminds me of the most improperly used stretch of land in Karnataka... Brigade Road!

Thanks for wishing me on the 19th!