Recognizing the integral part public parks play in the constitution of the urban fabric, a group of landscape and architecture practitioners within Ahmedabad, under the guidance of LEAF, have refurbished and designed many parks across the city, and continue to do so.
The task of developing and maintaining the 250 parks of Ahmedabad is complicated by a few factors –
1. This effort is not led, governed, and executed by trained manpower.
2. Only a portion of the allocated budget is actually spent towards this effort.
3. There has been no consolidated, adaptable model for this effort.
The goal of this on-going initiative continues to be to create an adaptable, sustainable, and cost-conscious model for the design and refurbishment of public parks in a city.
Land available for parks was identified in different areas of the city, and in different socio-economic groups. The identified parks varied in size, and significance. Background studies were undertaken for each independent park.
It is a significant step in moving away from the standardized image of a public park, and enhancing the visitor experience through variations in design.
Having studied and assessed parks across the city, 15 were selected all across the city – spanning geographical, and socio-economic strata. This has ensured that the initiative looks not only at parks that are significant to the local community – but also parks like the Victoria Garden & Parimal Garden – parks that are significant at the level of the city.
The process that has been designed is consultative, and is always cognizant of the needs of the local community in question. With LEAF guiding the process to create a kit of parts, design and execution has been undertaken by a group of landscape and architecture practioners in the city – the Parks People.
The entrance itself comprises a kit of part of sorts. It is then modified as per context as required. The design integrates wheelchair ramps along with regular entrances.
Supported by the U.N Mehta Foundation, the first phase of the initiative has seen the completion of 6 parks.