cities

Green walls to greet commuters in city

Commuters on the city roads would soon be treated to an occasional verdant wall when travelling beneath the flyovers, thanks to the initiative of Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) towards growing vertical gardens on flyover pillars.

A vertical garden is one where plants are grown on a vertical platform that is fixed to pre-designed metal panels. There are quite a few structures in the city that have adopted the green walls, including the GHMC, that has set up one in its headquarters. However, this is the first time that the civic body is trying this on flyovers.

The gardens are a part of the flyover beautification drive that the corporation has undertaken a while ago.

Flyovers at Nalgonda Crossroads, Basheerbagh, the Secretariat, Masab Tank, Punjagutta, Greenlands, Begumpet, Paradise-CTO, and near Harihara Kalabhavan are being beautified as part of the drive, and would host the gardens.

Additional Commissioner, GHMC Urban Biodiversity, V. Krishna, said about 33 to 35 pillars from these flyovers have been chosen by the GHMC to set up vertical gardens. “We have chosen the pillars based on their visibility. Initially, the pillars at junctions and major U-turns will be greened,” he said.

Agencies have been selected through tenders for creation, maintenance and protection of the gardens. Plant varieties such as Amaranthus, Peperomia and money plants are being planted in the vertical gardens. Besides being shade tolerant, these plants also have air purifying quality. Water would be supplied through drip from a mini tank to be installed beneath the flyovers.

To prevent theft, damage or vandalism, the planters are being fixed to an aluminium panel that has self-locking system. Further, the trays would be firmly screwed into the panels, so that nobody can easily remove them.

“The agencies will be responsible for replacement of damaged plants,” Mr. Krishna said, adding that all the pillars would be greened in a week or two.

“We also plan to thicken the horizontal greenery beneath the flyovers by filling gaps, once the civil work is completed,” he said.

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