Monday’s inauguration of the final segment of this gigantic beautification and cultivation drive that added beauty after the Army HQ’s relocation there under the Phase-4 of the Commander’s ‘Thuru Mithuru-Nawa Ratak’ project saw the Opening of the new Children’s Park, adjoining the newly-laid Jogging Track, Unveiling of two T-55 Armour Tanks in the premises, Illumination of the entire 2.6 km-long Jogging track with solar-powered street lights and Placement of a huge ornamental lamp at the nearest turn to the Army HQ.
Lieutenant General Shavendra Silva, instrumental in transforming the entire surrounding to be rich with scenic beauty and a landscape that could facilitate physical training needs and refreshing relaxation purposes, received all possible assistance from the Land Reclamation & Development Company and the Urban Development Authority with necessary guidelines and legal provisions before the entire rugged and marshy land area was turned to be what it is today. The professional expertise of the architect, Mr Harshan de Silva, Chairman, Urban Development Authority, imparted to the project at the request of the Commander of the Army immensely guided Army troops to complete the project as a resounding success under the close supervision of Major General Prasanna Chandrasekera, Master General Ordnance (MGO) at the Army Headquarters.
The whole project, designed under four phases by Planting 170 rare species of plants along the 1.7 km road patch that leads towards the Army Headquarters (Phase 1), Transformation of rugged land, marshy fields and cultivation of paddy in 12 acres (Phase 2), Construction of a 2-km Jogging track, including an Open Air Gymnasium and Planting of 100 coconut saplings (Phase 3), Extension of the 2-km Jogging Track by 600 m more plus the complete illumination of the entire Jogging Track and Founding of the Children’s park (Final Phase 4), commenced its initial work in December last year with the participation of the project’s brainchild. Subsequently, all three phases were vested in the public in the past few months before today’s inauguration of the completed final phase.
The 8-meter tall ornamental lamp, erected at the turn to the AHQ junction, inclusive of eight 152 mm Arty rounds, eight 130 mm Arty rounds and eight 122 mm Arty rounds was creatively designed by the Director of Electrical & Mechanical Engineers, troops of Electrical and Mechanical Engineers factory – Kosgama to match with the Commander’s intentions. Troops of Sri Lanka Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (SLEME) and Corp of Engineers Service (CES) actively contributed to make the entire project a resounding success under the close supervision of the MGO and Commanding Officers of those Units. Placement of two T 55 Armour Tanks symbolizes the grandeur and the dignity, attached to this state-of-the art Army HQ complex showcasing military power.
At the request of the Commander, the day’s Chief Guest, Mr Harshan de Silva unveiled a plaque and opened the new Children’s Park, switched on new illuminations and had a look at newly-laid beautified areas, together with the Chief of Defence Staff and Commander of the Army and other Senior Officers.
Major General Prasanna Chandrasekera, Master General Ordnance, Brigadier Indu Samarakoon, Director Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, Brigadier Indrajith Kandanaarachchi, Director Agriculture and Livestock, Brigadier Prashantha Wimalasiri, Director Management and Maintenance, Lieutenant Colonel Asiri Muhandiramge, Commanding Officer, 1 Corps of Engineer Services, Senior Officers and Other Ranks who sweated under them to beautify the area were associated with the day’s opening ceremonies