Urban spaces are getting more and more crowded. High rise buildings and skyscrapers have created a concrete jungle in most cities and towns of the world. Population density is on the rise and it becomes increasingly difficult to find fresh and green spaces within the city. The only respite comes from natural retreats which are restricted to gardens and parks that intersperse the otherwise artificial urban environment. In this scenario, imagine planning a design for landscaping which ensures scenic and natural green spaces embedded in every part of the city! Imagine seating and waiting areas filled with greenery that appreciate the natural world while making you reflect on the creativity and genius of human thought. The Green Belt Bench is one such landscaping idea.
The Green Belt Bench project seeks to fulfill the need to interact with nature throughout the city. It consists of planting a long belt of greenery along all roads and sidewalks. Within an urban space, roads and sidewalks constitute the largest and the most populated of all the infrastructures. Running greenery all alongside them will ensure maximum benefit for the maximum number of people.
This Green Belt will be intelligently designed and contoured to provide seating areas along its course. Wherever necessary, a gentle slope and dip can be built into the belt to create a resting area. The green belt could double up as a playing strip for the children. And what’s more, it is available throughout the town too.
This Belt will also act as a natural bioswale. It will filter and purify the runoff water from rain and storms. The bioswale needs a meandering geometry which can be easily achieved in the Green Belt. Man-made bioswales consist of compost, vegetation and rip rap. The Green Belt provides a paradigm shift in constructing bioswales. It can run around parking areas and along the sidewalks to maximize the efficiency in trapping pollutants and silt.
Thinking a little ahead, the same concept could be used to shape bus stops, taxi stands and even stores! All it requires is a little tweaking with the contour and shape. Resting areas for people to lean against and take a breath of fresh air can also be designed into it. With the rapid increase in population density, Green Belt Benches and Green Belt landscaping promises the most economical way of bringing greenery into the cities. The idea can be factored into the planning itself and requires only a minor tweaking in the budget.