Design of the Green Belt

Project Activity   :  1.3

Long title              :  Redesign of the multipurpose of green belt in Batticaloa

Redesign of the multipurpose green belt had been identified and mentioned as the activity 1.3 of the project on ‘Climate resilient action plans for Coastal urban areas in Sri Lanka’ (CCSL). The project aimed to develop five Climate Resilient Adaptation strategies and supporting Action Plans (CRASSAP) in BMC and NMC areas. Redesigning of the multipurpose green belt is the first CRASSAP formulated under the above task exclusively in BMC.

It was understood that the presence of green networks can significantly reduce the vulnerabilities of the local communities to the impacts of natural disasters exacerbated by climate change. The project concept and the need of a green network for Batticaloa were evolved by the opinion of local stakeholder during a previous project titled ‘City Development Strategies to respond climate change in coastal urban areas of Sri Lanka’, undertaken by UN-Habitat, Sri Lanka in partnership with University of Morattuwa in 2010. Owing to the importance of the coastal areas, it is decided to redesign the green belt of the 12km coastal belt.

After reviewing the present vegetation pattern in the area, the redesign of the multipurpose green belt action plan initiates its activities adhering to the design considerations of resilience to multi-disaster situations. Facilitate the community activities through spatial re-arrangements, enhance the Bio diversity of coastal eco-systems, protect the coastal beaches and other geo-morphological forms from sudden wind and wave processes, strengthen the economic benefit transfers to local community.

Redesign of the multipurpose green belt, CRASSAP is based on a series of rapid assessments including plant inventory of the coastal belt, land cover mapping, activity survey and a comprehensive local stakeholder consultation process. The findings of baseline studies showed that the coastal belt of the area is predominated by planted green belts. There were some stretches without green belts while some other stretches showed of recently disturbed vegetation after tsunami (2004) and flood (2010/11). Need of redesigning of the green belt was well recognized by local stakeholders. Five sites at the 12 km stretch were selected to undertake pilot projects. The project has prepared in five action plans with detailed designing of the green belt for Poonachchimunai, Kallady, Thiruchchendur, Dutch Bar and Navallady areas. The Multi Criteria Analysis (MCA) technique was employed to evaluate the different design alternatives.

The detailed designs were prepared after consultation with the local communities and the designs were verified at a multi-stakeholder validation meeting with the common consensus supported by local political will and commitment on way forward. This booklet summarizes the project process and presents the participatory-validated design solutions generated for each site.