Urbanization offers several opportunities for the growth of economic, social, and technology sectors, offering benefits to society in terms of better living and healthcare facilities, as well as employment opportunities. However, some major downsides of urbanization are overcrowding and environmental degradation. In order to realize sustainable and environmentally friendly urbanization, there is an urgent need for comprehensive land use planning and of urban settlements by giving due consideration to create and sustain urban green spaces (UGS) such as parks, gardens, roadside vegetation, etc. UGS play a vital role in reducing air pollution, mitigating climate change, and providing various ecosystem services. UGS are being deteriorated substantially due to booming urbanization in developing countries such as India. This review is focused on highlighting the many challenges in creating and maintaining UGS in the Indian context. It is a compilation of available reports on problems linked with poor land use and/or planning of urban settlements. The challenges associated with the management and maintenance of UGS are described. The poor and irregular watering of many existing UGS is one of the major issues among several others requiring immediate attention to resolve the problem of deteriorating UGS in some cities of India. As the groundwater resources are rapidly depleting because of ever increasing water demand, UGS are being dispensed with poor and irregular watering resulting in their deterioration. A list of possible solutions and prospects of UGS in cities aiming to become smart cities soon are discussed in this review. Efficient wastewater treatment and a non-potable reuse system are possible solutions for better prospects of UGS, and therefore, optimism of better cities with low to null urban heat island effect.
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