Unhappiness expressed at new town signs

NOT HAPPY: Moruya resident Toby Whitelaw thinks the design of the town signs is a "disaster".
NOT HAPPY: Moruya resident Toby Whitelaw thinks the design of the town signs is a "disaster".

A Moruya resident is furious at the design of the three new Eurobodalla town signs, which he says look like “a dog’s breakfast”. 

Graphic designer Toby Whitelaw spoke at yesterday’s council meeting of his frustration at the design and also pointed out that the signs did not adhere to council’s town signs policy. 

“My main objection is that there is very little resemblance to what we were to expect from the council’s town signs policy,” he said. 

“I think it is a lazy design. The Harbour Bridge is very inaccurately drawn and the letters are illegible. 

“The columns cause design problems in every single way. They look like a row of high-rise buildings, which is entirely inappropriate for the area.”

The council’s sign policy was created in early 2015. Mr Whitelaw estimates the new signs are “at least double” what the policy allows. 

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Danthonia Designs, based at Inverell, was given the design contract for the signs at Narooma, Moruya and Batemans Bay. It is a trading name for Church Communities Australia, a registered charity operated by a Christian group.

Mr Whitelaw wanted council to admit the new signs did not comply with the policy.

“The policy was written, exhibited and then disregarded during the design process and also disregarded by councillors when they accepted the designs,” he said. 

“Arts NSW awarded $5000 to council for ‘Granite Town signage’ and this was apparently put towards the inclusion of the Sydney Harbour Bridge on the Moruya signs. The new sign just leaves the viewer wondering what the Sydney Harbour Bridge is doing on the Moruya sign.

“The signs do a poor job of recognizing and respecting the traditional owners of each region. 

“If the signs were a maximum of 3.5m2, they might not have cost $118.614.80 plus installation ($47,000).”

Moruya resident and architect Peter Freeman said the signs should be replaced. 

“In September (at the elections) I will be voting for a council that is prepared to commission local talent for such work and is prepared to make a fresh start on the entrance signs,” he said.