Bangkok, Thailand
City population: 5527994
Duration: 2020 – 2021
Implementation status: Completed
Scale: Micro-scale: District/neighbourhood level
Project area: 1048 m2
Type of area: Previous derelict area
Last updated: April 2023

The 'Wat Hua Lamphong Rukkhaniwet' Park was developed by the we!park group, which is part of the ‘Green Bangkok 2030’ project network, aiming to increase the amount of green space in Bangkok. It is a small pocket park in the busy business district of Bangkok, Thailand. The land was abandoned for many years before being donated to the city for public use. We!park applied participatory space development methodology to optimise and tailor the area to its soon-to-be users' needs. As part of this approach, the local community and all the potential users of the park were involved in the form of various surveys, interviews and workshops. Bringing in multiple ideas was a cornerstone of the project planning process - all to create an inclusive garden with elements from everyone in the neighbourhood community - a concept called 'garden next door'. The park has three main parts to accommodate different activities enabling relaxation, and physical activities, and providing space for educational and cultural events. (Ref. 1,2,3,4)

Hua Lumphong Rukkhaniwet Park - stepped lawn
Source: Ref. 4

Overview

Nature-based solution

  • Community gardens and allotments
  • Community gardens
  • Parks and urban forests
  • Pocket parks/neighbourhood green spaces

Key challenges

  • Climate action for adaptation, resilience and mitigation (SDG 13)
  • Climate change adaptation
  • Green space, habitats and biodiversity (SDG 15)
  • Green space creation and/or management
  • Regeneration, land-use and urban development
  • Promote natural styles of landscape design for urban development
  • Water management (SDG 6)
  • Stormwater and rainfall management and storage
  • Health and well-being (SDG 3)
  • Enabling opportunities for physical activity
  • Creation of opportunities for recreation
  • Inclusive and effective governance (SDG 16)
  • Inclusive governance
  • Social justice, cohesion and equity (SDG 10)
  • Social interaction

Focus

Creation of new green areas, Transformation of previously derelict areas

Project objectives

1. Increasing public green space in Bangkok. 2. Creating useful and sustainable green space in the urban area of Bangkok by transforming small abandoned spaces. 3. Increasing accessibility to green space for citizens and thus improve their quality of life. 4. Encouraging social interactions among visitors. 5. Creating a green space tailored to the needs of the surrounding communities that accommodates various activities for everyone. 6. Boosting urban ecology and biodiversity. 7. Mitigating urban heat island effect. 8. Increasing surface water infiltration. (Ref. 1,2,3,4,7,8)

Implementation activities

The park can be divided into three main parts: 1. Area for exercise - short jogging track that run around the park and a pavilion with sport equipment. This space is surrounded by 3 gardens. - Flower garden along the fence - Ecological garden with vegetation that is also a habitat for urban wildlife - Relax garden - vegetation with fragrance. 2. Area for activities - multi-function stepped lawn, flexible area (hard paved), playground with benches, reflexology area. 3. Area for relaxation and education - relax pavilions with different seating and benches, a homework pavilion (with table and chairs that allow people to study), educational sigs (about the plants), and a swing pavilion. There is also a small plot of a vegetable garden to introduce urban farming to people in the community. Examples of vegetables that grow in the vegetable garden include Thai chilli and basil. (Ref. 2,3,4,5,9,10) Planting strategies 1. Keep the existing big ficus tree 2. Planting of a mixture of plants different in types, size and species, all native to Thailand and can be found in the area. Specific types of plants include: - Herbs - Flower and fragrance vegetation - Trees and plants that can be food for urban wildlife - Vegetable and edible vegetation The implementation also included covering parts of the park with permeable surfaces. (Ref. 2,3,8)

Climate-focused activities

Climate change adaptation:

  • Increase or improve urban vegetation cover to help reduce outdoor temperature
  • Create or improve outdoor spaces to help people escape from urban heat

Main beneficiaries

  • Citizens or community groups
  • Young people and children

Governance

Management set-up

  • Co-governance with government and non-government actors

Type of initiating organisation

  • Local government/municipality
  • Private sector/corporate actor/company

Participatory approaches/ community involvement

  • Co-planning (e.g. stakeholder workshops, focus groups, participatory mapping)
  • Crowd-sourcing/Crowd-funding/Participatory bdget
  • Consultation (e.g. workshop, surveys, community meetings, town halls)
  • Co-management/Joint management

Details on the roles of the organisations involved in the project

The initiator of the project was We!park, a non-profit organisation created by Shma Ltd., a landscape architecture design agency in collaboration with the Bang Rak District Office (สํานักงานเขตบางรัก) and the Environment Department of Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) and support from the Thai Health Promotion Foundation. In the realisation of the project, many actors from the private, public, civic and academic sectors were engaged. Such partners were the Shma Soen Co Ltd (Landscape Architectural firm), the Landscape Architecture Department of Chulalongkorn university), the Thai Association of Landscape Architects, the Thai Health Promotion Foundation, taejai.com (crowdfunding platform), Kasetsart University and Plan Toys. Other actors in the neighbourhood who participated in the development of the project were Montien Hotel, Le Meridian Hotel, Rose Hotel, Too Fast Too Sleep Cafe, Hua Lumphong temple, Hua Lumphong temple community, Buddhajak Wittaya School, other people in the nearby community, office workers, tourist. The land of the park was owned and donated by ML Dhisana Sritavaj, a board member of Haad Thip Public Co Ltd (sparkling beverage manufacturer) to BMA for public use. (Ref. 1,6,7,8, 9,10)

Project implemented in response to ...

... an EU policy or strategy? No
... a national policy or strategy? No
... a local policy or strategy? No

Financing

Total cost

€50,000 - €100,000

Source(s) of funding

  • Public local authority budget
  • Crowdfunding

Type of funding

  • Direct funding
  • Donations

Non-financial contribution

Unknown

Impacts and Monitoring

Environmental impacts

  • Environmental quality
  • Improved air quality
  • Water management and blue areas
  • Improved stormwater management
  • Green space and habitat
  • Promotion of naturalistic styles of landscape design for urban development
  • Increased green space area
  • Increased conversion of degraded land or soil
  • Increased number of species present
  • Enhanced support of pollination

Economic impacts

  • Other

Socio-cultural impacts

  • Social justice and cohesion
  • Improved liveability
  • Improved access to urban green space
  • Increased opportunities for social interaction
  • Increased involvement of locals in the management of green spaces
  • Increased access to healthy/affordable food
  • Health and wellbeing
  • Gain in activities for recreation and exercise
  • Cultural heritage and sense of place
  • Increased sense of place identity, memory and belonging
  • Increased awareness of flora and fauna as culturally and historically meaningful
  • Education
  • Increased knowledge of locals about local nature

Type of reported impacts

Expected impacts

Presence of formal monitoring system

Unknown

Presence of indicators used in reporting

No evidence in public records

Presence of monitoring/ evaluation reports

No evidence in public records

Availability of a web-based monitoring tool

No evidence in public records

References

Hua Lumphong Rukkhaniwet Park - playground
Source: Ref. 4
Wat Hua Lamphong Rukkhaniwet Park - pavilions and relax area
Source: Ref.4
Wat Hua Lamphong Rukkhaniwet Park - Reflexology path
Source: Ref. 7
Information about this nature-based solution was collected as part of the "NBS 2022" UNA Asian extension project funded by the Asia-Europe Foundation.