Shahbaz Approves Uplift Projects Worth Rs 12bn

punjab chief ministerPunjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif presided over a meeting of the governing body of Lahore Development Authority on Thursday wherein he also gave approval of Rs 12 billion for uplift projects.

Vice Chairman LDA Khawaja Ahmed Hasaan, secretaries Local Government, Housing, Planning & Development, commissioner Lahore Division, district coordination officer Lahore, director general LDA and other officers concerned were present in the meeting. The chief minister while granting approval to the projects of Azadi Chowk flyover, alternative route of Circular Road, qinqui flyover, General Hospital U-turn and Chungi U-turn directed to initiate work on these projects on priority basis.

The chief minister also gave approval to the funds of more than Rs 12 billion for the projects and directed that resources be utilised on public welfare projects as a sacred trust as transparency has been the hallmark of Punjab government and this policy would be followed in future as well. The chief minister while granting approval to the setting up of a separate company for LDA and issuance of bonds observed that it would help in the capacity-building of LDA besides generation of resources while modern services would become available to the masses.

The meeting also decided to maintain the quota of widows and heirs of martyrs in LDA housing schemes. Addressing the meeting, the chief minister said keeping in view the demands of rapid urbanisation, a future strategy be evolved while in addition to Lahore, regional infrastructure plan should also be evolved for Sheikhupura, Nankana and Kasur districts and planning should be made for supply of potable water and drainage and sewerage facilities to meet future needs. Shahbaz issued instructions to remove flaws in the housing bylaws in Punjab and directed that comprehensive rules and regulations be framed in this regard.

He said besides parking facilities, due attention should also be given to traffic management as there is a need to change the entire culture with regard to urbanisation. He directed that installation of LED lights and solar panels be made compulsory for the constructions of new plazas and a separate business plan be evolved for slum settlements and initiated as pilot project so that these settlements could be made a part of urbanisation. The chief minister further directed that a viable model of low-cost housing schemes be devised for the entire province including Lahore.

He said a plan be prepared for construction of 0.2 million low-cost houses in Lahore during the next five years while secretary Housing should evolve a project of construction of low- cost houses and setting up of a separate company at provincial level be considered in this regard. The chief minister also granted approval to necessary amendments in the rules and regulations for allocating quota of low-cost houses in private housing schemes and said that provision of shelter to the low-income segments of the society is essential.

He issued instructions for developing a new city near Garment City Kala Shah Kaku and said that in view of the project of Garment City, a new city in the area could be inhabited. Shahbaz further directed that the process of shifting of Camp Jail to an alternative site be accelerated and the proposed project of setting up a business centre at the place of camp jail be given a practical shape. The CM also gave approval to necessary amendments to make Land Disposal Act responsive to the need of the present age. He said the act be made simple and in line with the market needs.

He directed that commercial policy be made liberal while a plan should be formulated to control wastage of water. He also gave a nod to setting up regional offices of LDA and said as the scope of LDA had now been expanded to other cities therefore regional offices be set up to provide facilities to the citizens as soon as possible. He further said that necessary measures be taken for the project of construction of road along railways track from Shahdara to Raiwind while the project of construction of road from LOS to Multan Road on the drain be implemented expeditiously. -Dailytimes