The President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev visited the Main Botanical Garden and reviewed the results of its reconstruction during his working visit to Almaty.
The project was initiated in 2018 by the Bulat Utemuratov Foundation at the request of the Institute of Botany and Phytointroduction. The purpose of the project was to carefully restore the Botanical Garden, modernize its infrastructure and improve vegetation while preserving the integrity and identity of the garden.
The total cost of the project was USD 15 million. The best managers of the Verny Capital Group of Companies were involved in project implementation.
Taking into account the special status of the Botanical Garden and a high level of public interest in the reconstruction project, the Bulat Utemuratov Foundation ensured its full openness and transparency from the very beginning. The concept and master plan for the reconstruction were presented at public hearings in summer of 2018. Based on the recommendations and concerns of the participants of public hearings a draft reconstruction project was developed and presented in the autumn of the same year.
During the entire project implementation period, four press tours were organized with participation of the media, social and climate activists. Last year, before the start of construction works, public hearings were held in six stages to assess the environmental impact of project components (fences, heating networks, utilities, river water intake, landscaping, entrance pavilions).
Community watch group was created to monitor the progress of the project implementation. Volunteers were invited to take part in the works on the territory of the garden.
The Bulat Utemuratov Foundation has been providing regular reports on the progress of reconstruction through the media and specially created social media accounts on Facebook and Instagram. Any user can ask a question or leave a comment there.
Within a year of the project implementation, three new entrance pavilions with an electronic ticketing system were built in the garden. 174,3 thousand plants, including more than 1,300 trees, 40,000 shrubs, 130,000 cereals and perennials, and 3,000 roses were planted.
The water supply system has been restored, drip irrigation and automatic irrigation systems have been created, and now the vegetation receives 2,760 additional cubic meters of water per day.
Up to 27.7 hectares of public areas of the Botanical Garden were improved and extended, 50 square meters of roads and paths were repaired, lighting system (1,500 lights) and video surveillance system (130 cameras) were installed, and garden furniture (250 benches) was replaced.
In the North parterre, the road surface was replaced by natural stone, dry fountain and a reservoir with aquatic plants were built. Southern parterre with three ponds, pergola, and a field of miscellaneous herbs, avenues of maple, linden, birch and pine was created on a vacant lot.
A mobile app with garden map and description of vegetation has been developed. Special attention was paid to the accessibility of all areas of the Botanical Garden for people with special needs – convenient ramps for wheelchairs were built and a tactile path was laid.
The President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev positively assessed the private charity initiative implemented with active participation of the public and expert community.
Bulat Utemuratov, the founder of the Charity Foundation, expressed his gratitude to the President for the attention and appreciation of the project.
“We were very scrupulous about the implementation of this project in order not only to preserve the vegetation of the garden, but also to increase it by adding new types of plants. Careful restoration and use of advanced technologies are two main principles we followed. We have put our hearts and souls into this project and did everything possible to make the reconstructed Botanical Garden a pleasant place to Almaty residents. This is our gift to the city, which we present selflessly. The garden remains in public ownership and will continue its scientific activities,” - Bulat Utemuratov said.
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