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LDA reclaims misused public parking plaza
06-28-2010, 07:46 PM
Post: #1
LDA reclaims misused public parking plaza
Monday, June 28, 2010
LAHORE

CONTINUING its operation against illegal use of public utility site in Gulberg area, the Lahore Development Authority (LDA) has constructed a new road outside hotel Sun Fort to facilitate general public.

Officials said LDA reclaimed possession of a public utility site in Liberty Market, Gulberg that had been illegally used for the benefit of only a limited number of people by constructing a parking plaza on this precious chunk of land measuring four Kanals in this prime location of the city.

In violation of lease agreement, this parking plaza had been exclusively used for the convenience of people working in Sun Fort Hotel and its neighbouring shops, instead of facilitating the general public visiting the area.

The LDA staff also demolished the illegally constructed boundary wall and removed other hurdles in the free movement by pedestrians as well as smooth flow of vehicles in the locality by restoring road in front of Sun Fort Hotel to its original design with a width of 20 feet.

Officials said in 1988, LDA awarded lease of the public utility site to one Sheikh Zamir who intended to build a public parking plaza at the site for which it was reserved. Officials said at that time the LDA announced parking fee of Rs 2 per car at the plaza. Officials claimed that LDA had served a number of notices on the lease holder for stopping illegal use of this public utility site but these had been ignored by the occupants of the site. A number of delegations comprising of local residents and traders had called on Director General LDA and demanded for restoring the public utility site to its original use besides restoring the road for traffic.

Although the lease was in the name of lease holder, but there are strong evidences that the site had been sub-let to Sun Fort Hotel and the public utility site was being used only by a few people. The site has been lease out for a sum of Rs 125,000 per year and the lease holder was bound for providing electricity as well as for installation of elevators besides ensuring provision of other amenities. No such facility, whatsoever, has been made available in the building during the past 30 years, which was a violation of lease agreement. The lease agreement had expired as a result of repeated breaches. Traffic Engineering and Transportation Planning Agency (TEPA) has already announced construction of two parking plazas for more than 460 vehicles in the busy commercial centre of Liberty Market, Gulberg. These plazas will be erected adjacent to UCH and liberty petrol pump. The Seven storey parking plaza to be constructed near UCH will cover three Kanals and 16 Marlas and cost Rs 500 million.

The building will be completed within a year and will accommodate 206 vehicles with the average parking time of 12 hours per day, the LDA officials said adding shops will also be constructed in the basement as well as on the ground, first and second floors of the plaza while the third, fourth and fifth floor and its rooftop will be used for parking vehicles. A modern restaurant will also be established on the first floor of the structure which will have the capacity of upward extension of two additional floors.

Safety and security of the people has been ensured in these structures and the design included open stairwells and ramps, security devices such as road blockers, car scanners, CCTV, public address system, fire alarm and fire fighting, audio and emergency buttons that call into the booth or local police station, elimination of potential hiding places, such as under open stairs has also been arranged. Handicapped accessibility has been facilitated with vehicles close to stair and elevator cores having a direct path to key movement patterns of the garage.

The second parking plaza will be constructed at a cost of Rs 559 million, close to the petrol pump. This five storey building will accommodate 253 vehicles. Two basements and ground floor will be used for parking of vehicles where as commercial offices will be established on the upper two floors. It will also be equipped with latest facilities as will be provided in the first parking plaza.
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