Archive for the ‘Architecture’ Category

Vanishing heritage of Karachi

Vnaishing Heritage of Karachi

British left too many structures in our city. The main reason is that they loved Karachi for its wide sea and no-nonsense attitude towards life. Already, they’d converted it into a large shipping base for their goods to arrive. Unfortunately, we’ve not been able to preserve
lot of those wonderful buildings. And to top it all, corrupt politicians and land mafia has been very busy these days chopping good old buildings.

It is very clear that a nation which needs to understand its past needs to preserve the artifacts and structures from that past. If those are not preserved, there is no way of educating young people about the shared heritage. As a result, today lot of Karachi wallas are simply unaware of their rich heritage. They, at best, know something about KMC head office or maybe Quaid’s house at Kharadar.

Discuss below the ways in which common citizens may help preserve these beautiful and enduring heritage.

Renovation of Mazar-e-Quaid

mazar

Wake up and Smell the Rubble…

Bulldozer

Photography Credit: Jawad Ahmed

This entry could be about any of our localities, where we spend our days and nights. The same path we trudge regularly to get home after long hours in school/university/office.

In Karachi especially, when we build/buy our houses, there’s always that personal touch, some extravagance on our part done to be different from the rest of the houses around the area. It is when we like to extend our lawns a bit more by encroaching outwards; make stretched parking slopes taking main footpath’s space. In such fervor some forget that they are building on the land which is not really theirs.

Then KDA comes in and during their drive of amnesiac building/re-building of roads and you see nothing but rubble when you wake up one fine morning. I found a live example in North Karachi, Sector 8 to 10. I investigated to discover that the concerned authority had issued prior warnings and were instructed to shift their electric & gas meters but nobody paid heed to the notice and on 31st May at 6 o’clock sharp, bulldozers came and did what they are made for.

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The Birds of Karachi Must Feel Lucky! :)

I came across a forwarded mail a few days back containing some recent Pictures of Karachi.

Since then I was wondering that it doesn’t matter how much broken roads we still have, so many ‘kachi abadiyan’ and a number of failed and seized construction projects, we still have made it to the point when we look at our City it looks good, in fact it looks awesome!

Its better to take some time out from our fast lives, all the criticizing and a typical “Karachi daytime life” and spend some time to focus what we have that is really good and worth appreciating. Its good to put yourself in place of a bird and try to see the city as the birds might see it, not being a part of the hectic parts of life just enjoying the scenery. It might seem a little fanatic to be saying something like this “be a bird” or something like that. Its metaphorical, get the essence and spend some time of our lives into something memorable.

Take a look at a couple of pictures of sights in Karachi…
Sohrab Goth Flyover

The e-mail containing the pictures did not mention any credits to the photographer, so for me all the credit goes to the sender of that e-mail :P

Another contender for Karachi’s Tallest building?

skyscraper.jpg

According to this news item published in a reputed paper, the City Governement has signed a deal for a 47 storey building adjacent to Civic Centre.

The building complex will host 3 shopping malls, a 240 room five star hotel, a 12000-seat call centre, parking for over 2000 cars and will provide employment opportunities to over 50,000 people.

Seriously, great going if this happens, but a 5 star hotel near civic centre?? Do we not have enough “high security” zones thanks to these hotels and consulates?

Another New Park – Fateh Park, North Nazimabad

Yesterday, Naib Nazim Nasrin Jalil, inaugurated Fateh Park North Nazimabad, part of the CDGK drive to build more parks at a mohallah level. Other parks on the agenda are Jheel Park, Quaid Park Landhi, Aziz Bhatti and Hill Park. Fateh Park has a jogging track, walking path, canopies, lights,
beautiful fountains, benches, dustbins, flowery patches, shadow trees,
modern swings and slides etc.

Whats interesting about this park is not that it opened, but rather that it was one of the ‘freezed’ projects when the present city government took over.

Back in february, in a comment to Umar’s post, D0CT0r made the following observation about fateh park

only reason that i can think of for freezing of funds for these parks
by MQM is that they’re both started by Ex Nazim Naimutullah Khan.. and
his residence is walking distance from these parks…

Guess political rivalry doesn’t play much part here after all. As far as this blogger is concerned, “Daer aaye, durust aaye” has much more relevance.

The Gate

Sometimes, pictures capture a side you can’t appreciate with the naked eye. I’ve been to this park numerous times, but never seen this gate in such grandeur!

P.S. Any guesses on where this gate is?

Image credit: Zainub Iqbal

Utter Waste of Money

touchme.jpg
Almost a year and a half back in March 2006, I made a post ‘Minto Roundabout‘ on the, then newly constructed intersection of Shaheed-e-Millat and Hillpark, this busy intersection was overhauled by the Touchme company and had placed a large model of a toothpaste in the center promoting the Minto Brand (I had a few observations on it then as well).
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Karachi’s Skyscrapers To Go Green?

Mustafa Kamal was not in the city this weekend as we braced seeing our city being turned into a virtual battle field, and though I remain a fierce critic of this government’s general fondness for making foreign tours left, right and centre, for once I’m not going to jump the bandwagon. Kamal had gone to New York to attend the 2nd meeting of the C40 Large Cities Climate Summit called on by the former American president Bill Clinton, and though he was originally scheduled to return on the 20th of May, Kamal cut his trip short and returned yesterday after the weekend’s tragic events. This morning, searching going through my Google New Alerts for Karachi, I came across this detailed report from CBS which had more information on the happenings of the NY summit.

Sixteen cities from around the world will begin cutting carbon emissions by renovating city-owned buildings with green technology under a program spearheaded by former President Clinton’s foundation. Major global banking institutions have committed $1 billion to finance the upgrades of municipal buildings in participating cities. The makeovers will include replacing heating, cooling and lighting systems with energy-efficient networks; making roofs white or reflective to deflect more of the sun’s heat; sealing windows and installing new models that let more light in; and setting up sensors to control more efficient use of lights and air conditioning. Clinton’s foundation said the planned changes have the potential to reduce energy use by 20 to 50 percent in those buildings. The reduction could mean a significant decrease in heat-trapping carbon emissions, as well as cost savings on utility bills.

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FTC Bridge Swings?

FTC%20Bridge.gifThe first time it happened I thought it is some beggar leaning against my car that was stuck in a jam atop the superstructure of the FTC Bridge. The second time, I attributed it to some dizziness I might be carrying home from the office in the evening. But the third time around, I realized what was happening and I couldn’t wait to get off the bridge.
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