The Pune Cantonment Board (PCB) has embarked on an ambitious project to convert the 57-year-old Sir Jamsetjee Jejeebhoy Garden, popularly known as J J Garden, into a podium garden, located one floor above the ground. The Rs 1.45-crore project has been planned to create an alternative parking arrangement at the crowded Camp area.
The increasing traffic congestion, caused by the haphazard parking of vehicles in Camp area, has prompted the PCB to come up with the plan. Dr D N Yadav, CEO of PCB, told The Indian Express that consultants have been invited to draw up the plan so that they could accommodate a minimum of 150 cars. On Thursday, the PCB published notices inviting architects for the project.
The garden, spread across 0.7 acres of land, is located at the intersection of Dastur Meher Road and Bootee Street and was set up in 1960.
Sukhdeo Patil, assistant executive engineer of PCB, explained that at least 20 trees in the garden will be kept as they are. “A podium garden will be located one floor above the ground level and the basement can be used to set up a parking facility,” said Patil.
Minor repair works have been undertaken in the garden time and again, after the play equipment was broken and the water fountain located at the centre of the garden had developed cracks. However, considering the incessant flow of vehicles and traffic congestion, authorities have now planned to modernise the park by converting it into a podium garden. The triangular intersection is also lined with several snack stalls and small cafes. The place around the garden area at the MG Road-Aurora Towers intersection is also chock-a-block with parked vehicles.
“Landscaping, setting up a gym and installing play equipment, among other beautification measures, will be planned so that the garden can provide some fresh air despite the heavy traffic congestion,” said Yadav, adding, “all the trees will be protected.”