Public playgrounds, parks, and other open green spaces are vital to the development plan of any city, and a very important contributor to the liveability of a city.
A look at some of the best-planned cities around the world -- like Vancouver, Singapore, or Melbourne -- shows what a difference open green spaces can make to the quality of life in a big city.
These cities also show the economic growth and big business need not come at a cost to the environment.
But right now, the parks and recreational spaces in Dhaka are in a state of crisis: These spaces which should be open to the public are slowly being grabbed by unscrupulous parties, with the authorities doing nothing to stop the illegal grabbing.
Furthermore, the frequent usage of these spaces by government agencies and private organisations for their own purposes severely restricts public access to these spaces.
It is a sad statistic indeed that close to 40% of residents of the city, responding to a survey, said they have never visited a park.
This is not a healthy way for a city to evolve, and Dhaka needs to re-evaluate its priorities, if it is to raise the quality of life for its residents.
Ultimately, the quality of life in a city has long term economic consequences as well, besides affecting the health and well-being of its people -- foreign investors tend to be reluctant about investing in unliveable cities, preferring places where their managers would be more satisfied to live.
It is time we paid more attention to fixing our public park system.