There's been a breakdown in enforcing design and sign guidelines in Memphis, from Highland, through Midtown, down to the riverfront. Classified as the most restrictive zone downtown and the area the public felt should be most natural, the riverfront may be seeing the worst of it.
As Tom Jones of Smart City writes for Oct.'s Memphis Magazine: "To the south the original architectural design of Beale Street Landing, with its gentle, sloping roof, has been devastated." We have only seen the drawings of Bass Pro's signs that are headed for the Pyramid and Pinch areas, but they seem so large and inappropriate that the only alternative to tears is to laugh along with Davis Chritopher in his parody of downtown projects for the Flyer.
But signs don't have to destroy places. In an ad campaign for IBM's Smart Ideas for Smarter Cities, Ogilvy created functional outdoor advertising - a bench, a shelter, a stair ramp - with color and curve.