Green spaces in one pair of hands

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Green spaces in one pair of hands. Fot. E.Lach
Green spaces in one pair of hands. Fot. E.Lach

On 1st October the Warsaw City Council passed a resolution to appoint a new municipal body – The Warsaw Green Spaces Authority. In addition to implementing comprehensive green-space policies in Warsaw, its key role will be to supervise water courses and the development of the Vistula.

“We’re facing many challenges. The condition of green spaces in Warsaw varies considerably. We’re committed to changing this and improving the standard of green spaces in the city,” said Marek Piwowarski, acting Director of the Warsaw Green Spaces Authority. “Our task will also be to monitor water courses in Warsaw. I hope we will successfully tap into the potential of the various waterside areas, as we have with the Vistula,” said Deputy Mayor of Warsaw Michał Olszewski.

Green spaces
So far, responsibility for water management, environmental protection and nature, and flood protection has been divided between at least 22 bodies, including the City Cleaning Authority, the Public Spaces Authority and the Warsaw Property Authority, as well as individual districts’ authorities. With the “green” responsibilities now delegated to a single body, the development and maintenance of these areas will be more efficient.

Warsaw has 81 parks, including 18 general-public locations, and also 225 green squares and lawns, with a total area of 1,193 hectares.

In addition to taking care of the existing spaces (upgrades, renovations, etc.), the Warsaw Green Spaces Authority will be responsible for planning, raising funds for, designing and constructing new green spaces.

Additionally, roadside areas hold great potential for the development of green spaces in the city. As well as being used for transport purposes, these areas could be incorporated into the natural structure of the city to complement leisure areas.

The hydrographic network
The newly established Authority will also be responsible for the hydrographic network. Warsaw has a total of 150 water courses, including the Vistula River, smaller rivers, channels, lakes and ponds. The operational area of the Warsaw Green-Spaces Authority features more than 60 such water bodies.

The Authority will focus in particular on drainage-system structures and flood banks located within the limits of Warsaw. These structures across Warsaw used to be managed by a number of bodies, which made their maintenance and operation difficult, as individual elements of the hydrographic network are often located in more than one district. The Warsaw Green Spaces Authority will enter into separate arrangements regarding water courses which are managed by the Marshal of the Mazowieckie Voivodeship.