The Garden City is now well on its way to becoming a concrete jungle with its green cover making way for various infrastructure and development projects. On Wednesday, the underpass construction at Tagore Circle in Basavangudi claimed three trees, each said to be at least half a century old, when Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) personnel chopped them down. It is said that around 70 trees in the area will be felled for the contentious project.

Right from the beginning, residents of the area have been opposing the underpass construction. C.G. Raghavendra and Meera Raghavendra, who came to the spot on hearing the news, said: “It is sad that so many trees are being cut. There was no need for the project in the first place. The trees are unnecessarily being felled.”

In fact, they are already feeling the heat. Mr. Raghavendra said: “This year, we can see a change in the city's climate: it is no longer pleasant. If trees continue to be felled indiscriminately, the temperature is likely to only increase further.”

Though several residents and even politicians had stridently declared their hostility to the project, the State Government and the BBMP took it up anyway. Arun Padaki, a resident, said: “The project is totally unnecessary. After the underpass is constructed, the flow of traffic is bound increase and the authorities will then take up another project to widen Gandhi Bazaar Road.”

Residents say when they had approached the traffic police and sought a traffic light, they were turned down on the grounds that traffic was not heavy here.

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