Antwerp is Encouraging Urban Gardens With a Foliage-Filled Tram

The city will supply façade gardens and trees.


Nature, Plants
Woman surrounded by greenery.

(aliaksei kruhlenia /

The city of Antwerp in Belgium is encouraging people to try out gardening in a very unusual way.  If you ride the number 1 tram, you may have gotten a glimpse of a rolling urban garden going down the tracks. That’s because the interior of one of the trams was turned into a garden complete with plants hanging from the ceilings and walls, according to The Mayor.

The decorative tram operated for a day in early June 2023 as a way to inspire people to make their city greener. After all, if a 35-meter-long tram can become an interior forest, so can ordinary people’s homes.

Neighborhood in Bloom
The tram was part of the Neighborhood In Bloom initiative that offers residents – with green thumbs – façade gardens, plants, and garlands to hang between homes, reported Euronews. The council also offers assistance for people who want to purchase a collection barrel to save rainwater to water their gardens with.

The facades can hang between houses across the street from one another. The district is responsible for installing the gardens which includes lifting the pavement tiles, putting in soil, and planting. The residents are responsible for the care and feeding of the garden.

The Mayor points out that the foliage-filled tram is a somewhat misleading advertisement because one of the conditions of the initiative is that the facades cannot be used on streets where trams run.

This is part of the new edition of Neighborhood in Bloom. Since the initiative began in 2022, more than 200 façade greens, 170 sections of new trees, and over 100 green garlands were created.

Benefits of urban gardens
Urban gardens do more than just beautify a city. Plants and trees can help to cool cities and mitigate urban heat island effects as well as help to clean the air, reported Euronews.

Planting trees and foliage in cities also gives a home to nesting birds, squirrels and beneficial insects like pollinators. You can also plant food sources in your urban garden like edible flowers and fruit trees or bushes.

Green spaces are also very good for people’s wellbeing. Spending time in nature can help lift your mood, reduce stress, improve sleep, and promote physical and mental health.

Creating your own urban oasis is easy thanks to initiatives like Neighborhood in Bloom. So, if you have a green thumb, plant a garden and reap all the benefits that an urban garden has to offer. 

Bringing Blooms Back to Birmingham
Bus Stop Gardens Bring Bees Back to Cities
School Buses Turned Gardens are Popping up Everywhere