Particularly since the new millennium, India’s metropoles have undergone rapid change in the manner in which they organise and manage populations, traffic, nature, housing and work. Often, the transformation is so dramatic that it is difficult even for long-time residents of these cities to recognise familiar environments, to continue habitual practices and nurture well-oiled networks. Construction and demolition work impact the everyday— visual, built and soundscapes—in residential neighbourhoods, on streets or stretches of formerly barren land. While the many daily newcomers witness the speed and growth of the city, unaware of the layers of metamorphosed urban landscapes, residents living in the cities over generations or decades seem to quickly forget the colonial bungalows and gardens, shrines and small shops, or long stretches of ‘wilderness’. Hardly any place remains uncontested, used or occupied by humans and animals, and nature seems to survive merely in protected and gated contexts. The urban imaginary of cities like Bengaluru, Mumbai, Kolkata or Delhi is often emphasised in commercial media or personal gossip and seems to be torn between an apocalyptic ‘megacity’ narrative sparked with thorns of informality, poverty and lethargic stagnation, poor infrastructure, and planning and population density. The ‘world-class city’, on the other hand, is associated with confident progress, seemingly endless fountains of surplus wealth and globalised aesthetics.