Prescriptive Urban Greening Strategies for a Saturated Megacity: Reflections on Kolkata, India

Souporni PAUL, Jadavpur University, India
Suchandra BARDHAN , Jadavpur University, India

Abstract:Urban growth in middle-income nations like India usually happens beyond the infrastructural and environmental capacity a city can sustain, leading to loss of valuable natural resources. Most Indian cities suffer from congestion, poor environmental conditions, and a shortage of green areas. Urban green space (UGS) is fundamental to a city because of its ecological, social, economic, and health benefits. In conjunction with conventional urban planning policies, management tools, and regulatory frameworks, there is a necessity for adopting new urban greening strategies that can profoundly improve unhealthy living conditions. This paper studies the spatial distribution of UGS and discusses specific greening strategies in the Indian city of Kolkata, at its smallest administrative unit, referred to as “wards.” The recommended strategies based on the landscape ecological approach and practical implementation methods derive from a realistic assessment of opportunities and barriers that can help to reinforce green coverage, from the neighborhood to the city level. 

Map of Kolkata showing the spatial distribution of urban green spaces and wetlands in 2020
Map of Kolkata showing ward-wise percentage distribution of urban green spaces in 2020
Recommended urban greening strategies for the city of Kolkata