Imagine a blue streak of light all along the three metro rail corridors – L.B. Nagar to Miyapur, JBS to Falaknuma and Nagole to Raidurg – with signboards too in light emitting diodes (LED) run on solar energy. Greenery throughout the length of the railway with creepers on piers, ornamental plants or shrubs beneath the viaduct.
Also, handrails and different tiles to help pedestrians and the disabled, separate parking space for emergency vehicles, signboards indicating the destinations beneath, green screens for ad campaigns, sculptures at appropriate spaces and murals on the viaduct walls.
If the plans of the Hyderabad Metro Rail (HMR) fructify and if the award winning designs showcased by landscaping architects from different parts of the country is anything to go by, the entire elevated mass rapid transit system coming up will be eco-friendly as well as aesthetic.
Rohit Andrade of Earth Work (Bangalore), Oscar of Oscar & Ponni Architects (Chennai) and Harish Vangara of iammies Landscapes (Hyderabad) bagged the first three prizes, including cash awards of Rs. 8 lakh, Rs. 6 lakh and Rs. 4 lakh respectively.
A jury comprising of metro rail officials, retired defence architect Col N.A. Kumar, Biodiversity Board Member-Secretary and former GHMC Director of Urban Forestry N. Chandramohan Reddy and others chose the winners of the contest – design competition for landscaping below metro rail viaduct – which attracted up to 35 valid entries. The designs had to indicate plants that can camouflage the concrete piers to a certain height, absorb pollutants in the air, should be drought resistant and so on.
Narsimhan V.V.L. of Narasimham Associates (Hyd), K.B. Srivastava of K.B. Consultants (Hyd) and Elza D’cruz of Beacon Architecture Ltd. (Bangalore) got the consolation prize of Rs. 2 lakh each. Chief Secretary Rajiv Sharma and Principal Secretary (Municipal Administration & Urban Development) S.K. Joshi gave away the prizes.
Both the senior officials hailed the ‘imaginative’ presentations and expressed happiness over the metro rail project taking aesthetics as well as eco-friendly aspects as seriously as the civil engineering aspects.
The designs will now become the property of HMR and will be implemented in a combined manner across the three corridors, said HMR MD N.V.S. Reddy.