I used to be glad to listen to concerning the main facelift deliberate for Lumpini Park, which is slated to start subsequent 12 months. It is going to be the primary upkeep work that park has skilled in virtually a century.
At a latest dialogue on the Overseas Correspondents Membership, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) promised to maintain as many massive bushes because it probably can to assist purify the air for the town’s residents, in addition to to offer shade for park goers. This, is kind of a reduction.
The promise was in response to considerations raised by some expats who had been frightened that many bushes could be uprooted throughout the work, and these fears aren’t unwarranted. The BMA is infamous for its heavy-handed therapy with regards to coping with bushes within the metropolis’s parks and streets.
One expat talked about that a good variety of mature rain bushes had been felled to pave the way in which for the development of Benjakiti Park, which was opened in 1992.
The expat famous that whereas there are two main faculties of thought with regards to backyard landscaping — the English college, with its extra naturalist method, which lies in distinction to the closely structured French model of landscaping — the BMA has its personal, distinctive method of managing its parks and gardens.
He stated he could not determine, after years of dwelling in Thailand, the model and objective of the town’s parks. Most Thai parks are centred round a big concrete stage or construction, so it’s unclear if the parks are designed for train, or to assist clear up the air.
Properly, he is not alone. I grew up right here, and I have never been ready to determine myself what the phrase “public park” means to the BMA and our policymakers. It appears that evidently in designing the town’s parks and/or different public areas, policymakers rarely take into accounts the wants of their customers. A chief instance of that is Pom Mahakan Park, which seems to be like a easy garden dotted with just a few crops.
In Thailand, public areas are typically some form of empty lot that has been paved over with concrete and embellished with some bushes and/or potted crops. Mature bushes are felled out of considerations for security — it might fall over, or in some circumstances, act like a partition which blocks out the view, permitting guests to commit “lewd” acts.
Klong Ong Ang, the place the Saphan Lek market used to face, is one other instance. A few dozen mature bushes rising alongside the canal had been reduce down when the realm was revitalised. Because of this, there’s a whole absence of shade for guests throughout the day, thereby lowering the variety of vacationers. It’s a waste of public area.
To me, a public area must be a protected space the place one can hang around, and have interaction in sports activities and/or different leisure actions, with associates or alone. However to authorities, public areas should be fenced off and solely opened throughout sure hours for security causes.
On the FCCT dialogue, architect Yossapon Boonsom spoke about his We!Park Mission, which is geared toward making a platform for fundraising, in addition to knowledge-sharing concerning the design and use of public areas.
At current, funds given by donors for renovations and different works — often companies and/or constructing homeowners whose plots are situated close to a park, resembling Lumpini Park — are managed instantly by the BMA.
This mannequin, stated Mr Yossapon, skews the circulate of donations to parks which the donors need to enhance, so the We!Park venture goals to bridge the hole by performing as a platform which permits donors to fund works on different parks and public areas that want consideration.
To this point, Mr Yossapon stated that six potential location are being surveyed — together with an empty plot close to Wat Hua Lamphong and the elevated path between Lumpini and Benjakiti parks, the so-called “Inexperienced Bridge”.
As a result of design flaws which successfully isolate the Inexperienced Bridge from its surrounding areas, the realm is not precisely the most secure stretch within the metropolis to stroll after darkish. In actual fact, there have been occasional reviews of drug use there.
In response to Mr Yossapon, police have provided to usually patrol the realm, whereas the BMA as soon as mulled closing entry to the realm throughout sure hours. Nevertheless, patrols and gates are short-term options which may’t assure that there can be no crime there.
As an alternative, Mr Yossapon proposed city farming alongside the Inexperienced Bridge, as it’s going to present each meals and revenue for city residents, and weekend artwork lessons or sports activities for youngsters. Such actions won’t solely enhance the standard of individuals’s lives, however make them realise the worth of public areas. The thought must be utilized to different parks, however with completely different particulars to satisfy native calls for.
In principle, such a venture would reinvigorate underused plots all through the town, turning them into helpful public areas that native residents would need to frequent. Will the aim be achieved? I am nonetheless not 100% positive, but it surely’s price giving it a shot.