EVER walked around the city centre and felt as though you were trapped in a concrete jungle? Or have you had to search hard for a spot to sit down after a long walk in the city?
Let’s face it, the pocket parks that serve as rest areas in Kuala Lumpur are simply not enough.
We can hardly find small green spaces in the city these days.
What we do have are several prominent public parks near the city centre, such as Taman Tasik Titiwangsa, Taman Botani Perdana and Taman Tasik Datuk Keramat, but they are out of the way for those who want a short break before moving on.
Kudos to private developers that have incorporated more green features in workplace architecture for the benefit of employees, although this hardly benefits the general public because of the restrictions on access.
The responsibility to provide pocket parks should not solely rest with Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL).
In March, StarMetro reported that there were plans to create pocket parks in the city, like those being created in Jalan Beranang and Jalan Bellamy.
It is premature to say that DBKL is not doing enough to create these green spaces, as the cost to maintain them is increasingly high and a big budget is required.
However, this should not stop the local authority from pushing for a greener and more sustainable city – and support from the corporate sector could go a long way in achieving this goal.
Pocket park projects could be privatised or adopted by corporate companies as part of their corporate social responsibility initiatives or in collaboration with DBKL.
Take for example Think City Sdn Bhd’s collaboration with DBKL to rejuvenate the pocket park at the intersection of Jalan Raja Laut, Jalan Tun Perak and Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman.
Scheduled to be completed before the 29th SEA Games next month, the project under DBKL’s Signature Park Programme is aimed at designing a space that would offer people a brief respite from the heat and madness while making the city more liveable.
The advantages of having such pocket parks are manifold, but mostly they allow city folk to connect with nature in an otherwise fast-moving environment.
There are currently about 20 pocket parks in Kuala Lumpur and I believe most city folk want more of these green spaces.
But what we must realise is any effort for a cleaner and greener city is the collective responsibility of every person who benefits from it.