Saturday, 12 August 2017

Cuddon (Gove) building, Chennai- built to diaplay motor vehicles

Cuddon (Gove) building, Chennai.Travelogue

Among the colonial buildings in Madras (Chennai), the Gove building (earlier known as Cuddon Building) is a unique one because it was built to be used as a car show room for Simpson and Co based in Madras.  Various models of luxury cars were on display here, in particular, Mercedes-Benz. Built in 1916 in  Indo-Saracenic style, this ornate brick double-storied  commercial  building was considered the "finest showroom in India. Named in 1943, it is still being used  for the same purpose. After 1920s, private ownership of vehicles had begun to show upward mobility and the crux of the matter was only very rich could afford them. 

Cuddon (Gove) building, Chennai Age Fotostock

The name Cuddon building had close link 
with  George Cuddon of Simpson Co. When the building came up for sale, in 1943  one V.S. Thiruvengadaswamy (VST) Mudaliar bought the building and renamed it as Gove Building  VST Motors being a well-known  automobile company, concentrating on vehicle dealership of branded companies and other auto related part still uses this historical building located on Mount Road The building has plate-glass windows 18 feet in length with sun-blinds imported from England,  Italian marble flooring and wide frontage around 90 feet.
 In 2016, the building completed its first centenary.

The subsidiary company of VST Motors, VST Titanium Motors, is running  Mercedes-Benz dealership in this building. So, the traditional  nostalgic link between this building with fine stone columns and the luxury cars continue unabated. The company made some changes inside the building and never touched the outer part to retain its heritage value.