KARACHI: Experts on the architectural sector and eminent town planners have suggested an independent master plan department for Karachi for the purpose of its beautification and improvement of infrastructural development in accordance according to future requirements.
They were speaking at an urban planning conference entitled ‘Transforming Karachi’, organised by the Directorate of Urban Policy and Strategic Planning, P&D department, and the government of Sindh. The conference was chaired by Sindh Chief Secretary Syed Mumtaz Ali Shah.
Sindh Advocate General Salman Talibbudin briefed the participants about the salient features of the conference.
Welcoming the participants, Chief Secretary Syed Mumtaz Ali Shah noted that it is highly appreciable that eminent urban master planners and noted architects have encouraged government officials to achieve a noble task. “We shall resolve the issue to beautifying Karachi for the revival of its past glory,” he said while inviting participants for their recommendations regarding the removal of encroachments, buildings and rehabilitation in Karachi.
The chief secretary maintained that the provincial government has succeeded in vacating hundreds of public parks in Karachi in association with district administrations.
He said that 822 parks out of a total 1,578 have now been made functional while efforts are being made for the removal of encroachments from 135 other parks as well. He said that the remaining 756 parks are being functionalised currently.
Architecture experts emphasised upon developing and implementing a feasible plan for the removal of encroachments and rehabilitation of affectees. They also suggested effective steps for the preservation of cultural heritage.
The participants also made recommendations on land use conversion and restoration of public parks, playgrounds and public amenities. The stressed on an efficient public transport system including the revival of the Karachi Circular Railway (KCR), as per a comprehensive mass transit system.
Recommendations for the preparation of masterplan of Karachi were recorded while the masterplans made earlier for Karachi in 1922, 1958, 1973-85, and 1996-2000 were also discussed.
The participants of the conference included Yasmeen Lari, Shah Bano, SAIBAN Chairman Tasneem Siddiqui, Asad I. A Khan, Fazal Noor, Hamier Soomro, Shahid Abdullah, Professor Anila Naeem, Professor Dr Mir Shubbar Ali, Dr Nasir, Vice Admiral (r) Syed Arifullah Hussaini, Dr Noman Ahmed, and officers of the Sindh government including Karachi Commissioner Iftikhar Shalwani and Sindh Urban Policy and Strategic Planning Director General (DG) Faisal.