By CHRISTINA LOW firstname.lastname@example.org
Shah Alam mayor Datuk Mohd Jaafar Mohd Atan said the rain trees had grown very fast over the years and some areas looked dark.
“Some 3,310 trees have been planted here and most are rain trees.”
Mohd Jaafar said the 51.7ha park need to be upgraded to attract more visitors not only from Shah Alam but also those living in the Klang Valley.
“We have such a big park and it will be a waste if no one uses it,” he said.
The mayor intends to make the park accessible and friendly for families to spend their weekends and holidays.
Mohd Jaafar plans to plant fruit trees such as guava, soursop, mangosteen as well as ornamental ones like the weeping willows.
“When we have fruits trees, birds and insects will make the park their home,” he said.
With such a huge park to care for and a tight budget, Mohd Jaafar said it would take the council about three years to complete their greening and upgrading work.
However, the mayor said he was grateful that many non-governmental associations (NGO) for lending their support for the park.
So far under the Shah Alam Rivers and Trees For Life programme, the council together with government agencies and several NGOs such as Eco Warriors, Trees for Life, Sathya Sai Baba centre, Leo Club as well as students from the public and private institutions have since planted about 30,000 trees in the city.
The project which began in April involving about 1,500 volunteers has covered areas along the Damansara River, Renggam River and the Jelutong Industrial area.
Shah Alam has 1014.9ha of recreational and green zones with another 1004.8ha of forest reserve.
Educating students on the council’s ongoing green efforts was essential to remind them of the importance in keeping their neighbourhood a liveable one.
“We introduced the CARE concept which stands for conservation, awareness, recreation and education to four schools; SK TTDI Jaya, SK Jalan Kebun, SJKC Subang and SJKT Midlands,” Mohd Jaafar said.
The students were brought to a seedling site in Section 17 to experience for themselves the steps taken in planting and fertilising the trees.
Mohd Jaafar also encourages developers to work with the council in planting more trees in housing areas through the One Tree One Key programme.
Apart from tree-planting, the water quality in the lakes have also deteriorated over time and MBSA is now cleaning the Middle Lake.
Other upgrading work include providing ample parking areas, better walkways, recreational huts, rubbish bins, proper signages, a flower market, play area for children and an outdoor gym. New bridges will be built to replace the wooden ones.
Mohd Jaafar said MBSA was also planning several activities beginning early next year with a midnight walk, orchid-planting, sales of garden products, an environmental run and fish exhibitions.