In 2012, praise was heaped on Mexico City’s efforts to improve its air quality by planting vertical gardens and green sculptures in public spaces. Well, the city has done it again, and expanded on these efforts in a bold way, adding vertical gardens to one thousand pillars that help hold up its highways, amounting to upwards of 40,000 square metres of plants.
The project, known as Via Verde (Green Way), is a non-profit reinvention of the city’s major infrastructure that will add roughly 2.2 million plants to the city upon completion. These gardens and the plants they hold will absorb CO2, heat and noise while also adding some colour to these otherwise drab fixtures and producing enough oxygen for up to 25,000 people. They are also attached to specially designed irrigation systems that collect rainwater, limiting their impact on the city’s water supply.
These projects have had a drastic effect on the city’s air quality when combined with other efforts to limit pollution and have made Mexico City something of a standout in sustainable urban design. While other cities are exploring the idea, few have reached the implementation phase making the city a frontrunner in natural attempts at tackling pollution.
Mexico City still falls short of greenery standards set by the World Health organization, a problem the Via Verde campaign is all too aware of. However, their effort shows that with enough initiative and innovation, meaningful steps can be made to improve individual and communal well-being in some of the most densely populated cities on Earth.
- If you are interested in regreening your local area, consider joining or registering a National Tree Day event.
- Check what your city has planned to improve the sustainability of your urban environment and get involved where possible.
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Positive Environment News has been compiled using publicly available information. Planet Ark does not take responsibility for the accuracy of the original information and encourages readers to check the references before using this information for their own purposes.