KARACHI: Thirteen trees have been transplanted to Mazar-e-Quaid for the construction of the Green Line Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project in Karachi.
According to Landscape Architecture Studio’s principal landscape architect, Komal Parvez, five trees were transplanted under her supervision and then later eight trees were transplanted by the contractor as part of the demonstration.
The Studio, which has also estimated the number trees to be removed down, has been hired as consultants on the project by the Karachi Infrastructure Development Company Limited (KIDCL), which is managing the construction of the Green Line BRT system. The project managers plan, however, to replant over 800 trees during the course of the construction.
Of a total of 7,321 trees that have to be removed for the construction of the Green Line, 6,321 will be chopped down as they are Conocarpus and Eucalyptus, which according to Parvez, have already been banned by the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation. The remaining trees will be replanted.
The Green Line BRT will run on segregated lanes, from Surjani Town to Tower in District South. From Nagan Chowrangi onwards, the Green Line will run on the median – the central greenbelt of the road – that is lined with thousands of trees. Even at Guru Mandir, the Green Line will trample over some trees that date back to before partition.
According to Pervez, the work order for the transplantation of trees will most likely be issued this month. She said that the Mazar-e-Quaid management is on board with the plan. “The trees which are coming in the way of the construction will be transplanted,” she said.
Meanwhile, KIDCL’s technical manager Syed Qaiser Ali said that the process of the transplantation was already underway. “We don’t want any tree to be harmed during the construction work,” he said, adding that their main focus was on those trees which were halting the construction work and they would shift them to Mazaar-e-Quaid as soon as possible.
Earlier, KIDCL’s chief financial officer Bilal Memon had told The Express Tribune that, apart from the transplantation, the Green Line contractors plan to plant 19,500 new trees, estimated to cost Rs88 million.
On the other hand, Mazaar-e-Quaid’s resident engineer Muhammad Arif said that a few weeks ago around 10 trees were transplanted. “We have been asked to provide space for around 1,000 trees,” he said, adding that they have given 2.8 kilometres of space near the boundary wall for the trees. The trees will be planted at 15 to 20 feet intervals, he said.