Many trees have been felled in the name of development, say residents

Is Bezawada going the Hyderabad way in losing the green cover? Yes, feel many residents. Rising apartment culture, real estate boom and road widening works, the big and shade-providing trees are slowly but surely vanishing in different areas of the city.

Be it the Bandar road, Eluru road or BRTS road, which are major stretches in the city, trees are disappearing fast. Even in several colonies, the green cover is fading and the city is turning into a concrete jungle. Areas like Satyanaranapuram, Ayodhya Nagar, Governorpeta, Suryaraopeta, Guru Nanak Colony, which were full of trees in the past, are slowly losing their greenery.

Till last few years, many individual houses had at least one mango, one coconut and guava tree in the backyard. People used to guide their friends and relatives on planting trees in their houses. But with many individual houses making way for apartments, many big trees were cut and these days one finds only flower pots and other saplings in the apartment balconies, says Patnala Raju, a commercial establishment owner at ITI road.

There are many factors for the diminishing greenery in the city. Corporation authorities are clearing building plans which do not have scope for plantations. Earlier, owners used to leave sufficient space between two houses but now apartments are coming up even in 250 to 300 yards plots, points out M.V.Anjaneylu, secretary of Vijayawada Tax Payers Association.

This apart, in the name of road-widening, corporation authorities have chopped off many big trees and have planted much smaller trees on the dividers. In the past, big trees used to provide shade for motorists on either side, and now there is no such facility, he says.

Most fear that the situation will turn from bad to worse in the coming days with speculations of capital being established in Vijayawada. In anticipation of real estate boom, already many layouts have been developed on the city fringes like Kankipadu, Kanuru and other areas by cutting many trees, says K. Suryanarayana, a resident of Ashok Nagar.

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