Weeds in the place of a lawn around the children’s play area at the Corporation’s park near the Telephone Exchange at Saibaba Colony in the city. From the main road in Saibaba Colony, the Coimbatore Corporation’s park near the telephone exchange appears to be in a very good condition. Lending more credence to this appearance is the sight of people using a concrete surface walkers’ path. But, a deeper look inside says more efforts are need to improve the park.
Considered one of the better parks run by the Corporation, the one at Saibaba Colony is still below the required standards, given the amount of greenery the city requires. Barren patches of land stare at the people, where lush green lawns should have been cultivated. The available clutches of grass are only wild growth. This is the condition at a time when the Corporation looks to improve lung spaces in the city by using the reserved sites. Boys using the play equipment say the condition of these is deteriorating. The main play area gets flooded during rain, they say.
Residents using this park for walking or seeking to spend some time in peace want it to be developed. “We cannot find a more peaceful place in the middle of the city, especially in a busy area such as Saibaba Colony,” says T. Rangaswamy. “I have submitted a petition to the Corporation at a grievances meeting. No steps for improvement seem to have been initiated so far.” S. Rajalakshmi, another resident, says school children park their cycles on the walkers’ path and this frustrates senior citizens. Mr. Rangaswamy attributes this problem to the lack of watchmen, he says.
S. Velrajan, a regular walker at the park from 1990, says the condition is not bad enough to keep people away. The Corporation provided the concrete path four years ago and this of great use to the walkers. “But, we should have plants between the path and the compound wall. There is a need for a lot more greenery at the park,” he says. A little away, some other sections of the residents of the vast Saibaba Colony enjoy the conditions inside the Bharathi Park.
Mr. Rangaswamy says residents do not come to the park after 7 p.m. because they suspect anti-social activities. This problem can be solved if watchmen are posted. The Corporation’s Chairman for the Standing Committee on Education, Parks and Playgrounds R. Kalyanasundaram says the committee has suggested improvements to all the parks in the city and the creation of more. “Our aim is to have one park in every ward,” he says. The committee has called upon the civic body to provide funds for improvement without any discrimination among the wards, says Mr. Kalyanasundaram.