The Delhi Development Authority has decided to come up with urban parks in the national capital similar to London’s Hyde Park and New York’s Central Park.
The land authority is planning to develop large green spaces at three places — Hauz Khas, Aastha Kunj near Nehru Place and Swarn Jayanti Park in Rohini.
Sources in DDA said that the Hauz Khas park, spread over an area of 400 acres, might be the first one to get the ‘urban’ tag.
Officials in the DDA said they had plans to build a deer safari, museums showcasing Delhi’s history, a water lily pond and a butterfly corner in the Hauz Khas park.
A senior official of DDA said there are three picnic huts in the complex, which will be converted into museums.
He said the habitat inside the enclosure made for deer and the surrounding woodland will be converted into deer safari. “We, however, need a no-objection certificate from the environmental department before we go ahead with the proposal,” he said.
A DDA official said that the proposal has been shown to the authority’s top officials and its feasibility is presently being examined by architects. It may take more than five years to develop these parks.
The Aastha Kunj park, near Nehru Place, is second on the list of the DDA to be developed, followed by the 250 acres Swarn Jayanti park in Rohini.
Aastha Kunj park, spread over 200 cares, is situated near Iskon Temple on the one side and Nehru Place on the other. It functions as an important link between the Nehru Place metro station and residential areas of Sant Nagar and Garhi Village. DDA plans to develop facilities like playgrounds, gardens, public restrooms and picnic facilities here. “We are also considering the idea of landscaping the area with beautiful tree, tunnels, artificial lakes, fountains and bridges,” he said.
Residents living in the area said they were looking forward to the revamp as the park had gained notoriety for becoming a meeting place for criminals. Lack of proper lighting and security guards has added to the problems.
“The residents of Garhi village had formed a special security teams to guard their locality. This security team of nearly 20 people, aged between 40-50 years, used to guard the entry and exits of the park leading to the colony,” said Sahil Sharma, a resident of the area.
DDA is yet to chalk out a detailed plan for developing Swarn Jayanti park.
A DDA official said that the idea of developing the parks was mooted as most of the big cities in other countries have such large parks which serve as their ‘identities.
Delhi has, however, thus far lacked its unique ‘identity’, he said.