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MCG looking to set up recreational areas along city drains

By Kartik Kumar, Gurugram
PUBLISHED ON MAR 12, 2020 06:28 PM IST

The Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG) has initiated a citywide assessment survey to identify drains that can potentially be converted into a recreational area, officials said on Thursday.

Since last year, the MCG has been working on setting up jogging, cycling and pedestrian tracks on a five-kilometre stretch of the Badshahpur drain, between Vatika Chowk and Hero Honda Chowk, while also setting up dedicated spaces for an open-air theatre and other cultural activities.

In addition, the tracks along the corridor are being established in an elevated manner and designed in a way to ensure rainwater flows down and recharges the groundwater table.

As per a multimedia presentation released by the district administration on February 14, work on around 1.3 kilometres of the five-kilometre stretch has been completed by the MCG and iamgurgaon, a non-government organisation.

The presentation further highlighted that the 1.3-kilometre area has the capacity of holding 324,303.912 MLD (million of litres per day) of water, while 175 tonnes of concrete waste was recycled from the site and used in constructing the pavement, cycle, jogging tracks and seating areas. In addition, native trees, shrubs and grass cover have been planted in 65% of the area.

Recycled products used in the Badshahpur corridor include concrete blocks, kerbstones, steel bars, glass bottles, gravel, stones, metal roads, tyres, ropes, wires, tiles and bricks.

MCG officials said that they have identified the Gwal Pahari and Jharsa drains as potential sites for undertaking a similar venture. Assessment surveys of the two locations are underway.

“We are undertaking a feasibility study of the six-kilometre drain in Gwal Pahari, which can be converted into a similar project on the lines of the Badshahpur corridor,” said Raman Sharma, chief engineer, MCG.

“The survey was initiated last week and we will conceptualise the project in such a manner that the corridor is built upon the parts of the drain that are concretised and in no way hinders groundwater recharge through seeping of drain or rainwater during monsoon. Depending on the outcome of the survey report, we will take a final call on it. We are also looking at other potential sites for the project,” he said.

MCG officials said that a survey of drains along Jharsa is also underway, albeit at a nascent stage in comparison to the one at Gwal Pahari.

Environmentalists said that the MCG should treat the Gwal Pahari and Jharsa drains differently from the Badshahpur drain. “The Badshahpur drain was already heavily concertized. In comparison, the drains at Gwal Pahari and Jharsa are completely open, barring a few encroachments. It should ideally be left in its present state as the National Green Tribunal (NGT) directions already state the floodwater drains cannot be concretised in any manner. The MCG should not consider these two drains as potential sites for rejuvenation,” said Vaishali Rana Chandra, an environmentalist.

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