Blue Area commercial hub

The Capital Development Authority has decided to start expansion of Blue Area commercial hub in the Capital, a CDA official said Thursday.

The official said a number of commercial plots would be auctioned soon to private companies to build high-rise plazas in the Blue Area. The CDA is currently demarcating the plots and expects to earn 20 billion rupees through the auction.

An engineering company, Nespak, has prepared the extension plan and already given number of presentations to the CDA Board.

“We are waiting for the enforcement of new building codes being prepared by the Housing Ministry after which the CDA would allow the private parties to build plazas in the Blue Area,” the official said.

At the moment the CDA has not decided how many storeys be allowed for high-rise plazas but it may set the limit between 20 to 30 floors, he said.

Nespak has proposed to extend the Blue Area up to sector F- 8, the official said, adding that in the long run the commercial area would ne expanded up to sector F-14.

As part of the expansion plan an underpasses would also be built at China Chowk near Kulsoom plaza to ensure smooth traffic flow. The plan also includes construction of footpaths and parking lots as well as a tram service. The expansion of the main commercial area would boost economic activity in the city, the official said.

The amount accruing from the auction of commercial plots in the Blue Area would be utilized for the execution of road projects being prepared by the planning division of the Authority.

A final presentation would be given to Federal Interior Minister Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao to secure a green signal for the implementation of the plan.

Multi-storey plazas built in the past did not have adequate parking facility but the new ones would be required to do so keeping in view the sharp increase of vehicles in Islamabad to 340,000.

To cope with the traffic congestion two other underpasses in addition to the one planned near Kulsoom Plaza will be built at a cost of around 850 million rupees, the CDA official said.—APP

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