Rooftop garden on car roofs: Idled taxis in Thailand being used to grow food
Idled taxis in Bangkok, Thailand are being utilised as small vegetable plots to grow food as coronavirus restrictions have put drivers out of work. Workers from two taxi cooperatives in the city have assembled miniature gardens on roofs of these cars by using black plastic garbage bags stretched across bamboo frames.
They have added soil inside the black plastic bags in which a variety of crops have been planted, including tomatoes, cucumbers and string beans. The car park where idled taxis have been converted into rooftop gardens look more like an art installation to grab attention of by-passers. Food grown on these taxi roofs will be used to feed out of work drivers and the left over food will be sold in the local market. “The vegetable garden is both an act of protest and a way to feed my staff during this tough time," the leader of one of the cooperatives was quoted by the Associated Press.
It is also a way to draw attention to the plight of the taxi drivers who have been out of work due to the pandemic-induced lockdown measures. Only about 500 taxis are plying on the streets of Bangkok while at least 2,500 are simply sitting idle at various car parks in the city. Most of the drivers of these taxis have left the taxis and the city to move back to their villages.
Moreover, the taxi fares have also fallen steeply due to increased competition and very less demand, resulting in a fall in drivers' incomes. Many taxi drivers now can't even afford the daily cost on their vehicles. Due to the coronavirus restrictions, tourism in Thailand has gone down, which also brought down the business of taxi cooperatives.
(with inputs from the Associated Press)