Open spaces play a vital role for busy metropolitan cities. These are healthy spaces that are essential to counter the problems of rapid urbanization and to sustain natural ecosystems and biodiversity. In housing societies as well, there is a requirement for creating green spaces. Open spaces fall under the direct supervision of development authorities and regulatory bodies. However, it is the responsibility of all citizens to maintain and ensure a healthy ecosystem is able to thrive for years to come. Let’s see the many types of open spaces in a city and why you should take care of them.

Parks
A city that’s home to an adequate number of parks is generally considered to be a healthy one, no matter the population or extent of urban sprawling. There are mainly two kinds of parks in cities: those located in housing societies, and the ones in forest-protected areas. Both of these sustain biodiversity, at varying levels. Forest and/or protected areas are not easy to find in most cities. In Pakistan, you’ll find these more abundant in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. As these are naturally-occurring and fall under the direct supervision of town municipalities, these become protected areas. Prominent examples of these include Jinnah Park in Lahore, and Ayubia National Park in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Green Belts
For most people in the metropolis, green belts are the dividing line between two roads, however, green belts carry out an important role in regulating temperature, and noise pollution. Their function is directly linked with how widespread they are. Moreover, you’ll see that in most properly-planned cities, these green belts are much thicker. In Islamabad, most main roads run parallel to green belts that are dense forest strips. In Lahore, along the Ring Road, you’ll see much larger green spaces where many families come to relax and spend time in a pleasant environment. Here, you’ll see a proper ecosystem with biodiversity that creates a fresh environment, much different from that of the surroundings.

Outdoor Recreational Facilities
In Pakistan, it’s fairly common to see young people playing out in the streets and even green belts. Taking this as an opportunity, a large number of developers have created outdoor sports facilities which can be rented. You’ll see a lot of these in major cities like Lahore, Faisalabad, Islamabad, Karachi, Rawalpindi, etc. Open playgrounds or cricket pitches such as these offer a healthy way of spending time in a group. Many companies take their employees here for team-building exercises. Similarly, water parks also offer opportunities for recreational water sports to people.

Beaches
Open spaces such as beaches are one of the most precious sites to enjoy nature. While oceans are being polluted which is also affecting coastal areas, there is a dire need to sustain them, reap benefits from marine tourism, as well as providing people a healthy environment to experience the bounties of nature. Pakistan has almost 1,000 kilometers of coast stretching from Sindh to Baluchistan, providing one of the best beaches where people go to surround themselves in a calm environment with pleasant sea breeze and ocean waves. These, too, are natural picnic spots that boost the local economy through tourism.

To cap it all, green spaces hold a significant importance to make cities sustainable. Incumbent government is making appreciable efforts to create green spaces where possible under the umbrella of tree tsunami project. Hopefully, these efforts will bring fruitful result in the long run. Being a good citizen, every Pakistani should also should also disseminate the message about the importance of green spaces where possible.