The actual purpose of road signs is to facilitate the road users but the situation seems quite contrary in case of Agha Shahi Avenue where the abundance of signage along the road is rather causing confusion for the motorists.
The Agha Shahi Avenue, which is also known as the 9th Avenue, is a major road linking the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad and is preferred by a majority of motorists to reach either city.
Starting from IJP Road and ending at Khayaban-e-Iqbal, the avenue is filled with dozens of road signs in different colours and sizes, which are enough to baffle one’s mind as soon as getting on the road. At some points, there are so many signboards installed in one place that they overlap each other making it next to impossible for the motorists to understand and determine their direction, especially those who are using the said road for the first time.
Moreover, the different shapes, colours and sizes of the road signs make no sense and it appears as if they have been installed hastily without gauging the necessity or convenience of the road users.
Talking to ‘The News’, the motorists criticised the authorities for installing the road signs in such a random manner that puzzles them instead of facilitating them. Anila Haroon, one such motorist, said all the signboards have been installed in a haphazard manner and it seems as if they had been erected just to fulfil a formality.
“The turning signs have been installed just at the corner of a turn, which must have been fixed a few yards before a turn,” she said and added that there is no point in erecting the same signboard in different colours, as it does not serve any purpose except further confusing a motorist.
Another motorist, Mukhtar Jaffri, said he is astonished to see dozens of signboards painted with ‘Agha Shahi Avenue’. “It is understood that we are driving on Agha Shahi Avenue and two or three such signboards are enough.” He said most of the road signs overlap each other and motorists could not see them while driving. “It is when a motorist reaches very close to the signs is he able to see and read them properly,” he said.
Besides confusing the motorists, the plenty of signboards are deteriorating the beautiful scenery of the city. “The abundance of signboards is giving an ugly look to the otherwise picturesque surroundings,” said Aftab Ghani adding that so many signboards could also increase the accident risk, as they easily divert the motorists’ attention from driving. “Erecting such a large number of signboards on such busy roads is not at all a sensible approach,” he said.
The motorists urged the relevant authorities to take immediate steps to remove the unnecessary signage from the road and also stressed for the installation of signboards only on proper spots rather than fixing them randomly without any purpose.