Abu Dhabi: Five new neighbourhood parks will be built in the capital’s suburbs this year in response to residents’ persistent demands for more green spaces in the city, a municipality official said on Monday.
Four of these will be located in Al Shamkha area and the other will be in Al Adlah, Ali Al Maamari, head of project management at the Municipality of Abu Dhabi City, told Gulf News.
“Whenever the municipality organised a town hall meeting, residents would always highlight the need for more recreational spaces. So over the last few years, this has been one of the municipality’s main goals,” Al Maamari said.
He was speaking on the sidelines of the 37th Plantation Week, which includes a series of activities to create awareness about environmental conservation and safe agricultural practices. The initiative kicked off in the capital on Monday at a newly developed neighbourhood park in the suburb of Mohammad Bin Zayed City, and will continue until March 20.
There are 64 public and neighbourhood parks across the capital city at present, as well as 60 smaller playgrounds in various localities.
“This drive to ‘green the city’, despite the harsh climate and water scarcity, will also be visible as the municipality works to landscape more streets and public spaces. These new green areas will incorporate native plants, and very water-efficient irrigation systems will be used,” said Mosabah Al Murar, acting general manager at the municipality.
Stretches of Shaikh Zayed Street offer a peek into the municipality’s new landscaping strategies. The sidewalks along the road now feature native plants, wide spaces for walking, cycling tracks and benches for resting.
Al Murar, along with other officials, planted a sapling to symbolise the emirate’s vision of a greener, sustainable future as part of the opening the Plantation Week.
Al Maamari also said that the municipality would continue to upgrade many of the existing public parks in the city.
“Many of these parks were built about three decades ago, and people’s use of the equipment coupled with the harsh climate has caused much of the play areas to become worn down. This is why the municipality has embarked on a comprehensive plan to refurbish many of the older parks,” the official explained.
This year, the public parks in Al Bahia, Al Rahba, Nai Yas, Al Khatm and Al Maqtaa will be refurbished. They will be fitted with new play equipment and sports courts, and many of the areas will include sun shades so that younger children can play comfortably.
Popular venues on the island, like the 72,400-square-metre Khalidiya Park, Capital Garden and the 90,000-square-metre Al Zaafaranah Park have already been refurbished over the last two years.