Works of modernisation of the botanical garden on Museum compound were launched by Finance Minister K M Mani on Wednesday. The Rs 2,56,20,000-project includes installation of water fountains, landscaping, pavilion etc.
An original Rs 5 crore-project, which included musical fountain, cloak room, glass house and restaurant, was temporarily dropped owing to financial constraints. The first phase of modernisation will cover around five acres of the garden.
The 120-year-old garden is undergoing a major modernisation for the first time. The Kerala Land Development Corporation (KLDC) is expected to complete the project in four months.
Rs 94 lakh has been earmarked for landscaping, Rs 21 lakh for water fountain and Rs 40 lakh for installing chairs around trees. As many as 50 chairs will come up around trees. There will be seven pavilions, costing Rs 24 lakh. Other works include lighting (Rs 4.6 lakh), sign boards (Rs 3.5 lakh), renovation of footpaths (Rs 39 lakh) etc.
Mani, during the inaugural address, urged the Museum authorities to take up renovation works of the entire 15 acres. He agreed to allocate more funds for the project.
K Muraleedharan MLA presided over the function. Minister for Museums and Zoos P K Jayalakshmi released the plan. Mayor K Chandrika was the chief guest. KLDC secretary Ferold Xavier presented the project. Museum Director K Udayavarman welcomed the gathering. KLDC chairman Benny Kakkad, councillor Leelamma Issac and Museum administrative officer K K Theresa also spoke at the function.