by Colleen Barilae – EM TV News, Lae
The Lae Botanical Gardens have received little attention over recent years, but a boost in funding will soon change that.
Today, Swire Shipping in Lae donated K70,000 to the National Forest Research Institute (NFRI) for the garden’s redevelopments.
Acting Director of NFRI, Dr. Martin Golman, said the botanic garden has embarked on a master plan that includes redevelopment of the site.
The dummy cheque presented today will go towards the design process of four smaller gardens that will be built within the Lae Botanic Gardens area.
Dr. Golman, said implementation of the projects would require further funding assistance.
Occupying 38 hectares of land, the botanical garden is home to over 1,000 plant species grown beneath a dense forest.
At the northern side of the garden lies the preserved Australian Air Force plane that gives an historical scene of Papua New Guinea.
Some corporate houses in Lae have realised the eco-tourism potential the botanical garden could have for Lae’s community, and Swire’s stated that they would like to see Lae take this opportunity and run with it.
“We’re very happy to make the contribution and hopefully we’re hoping that there are a lot of other companies who have heard about the project and becoming interested,” Woodrow said.
The current state of this garden has required NFRI to run a full rehabilitation of the site.