LAHORE - District Coordination Officer and Lahore Development Authority (LDA) Chairman Noor-ul-Ameen Mengal has underlined the need for a single planning and development authority for all areas falling in the jurisdiction of Lahore district which could be held responsible for implementation of Master Plan for development of the City.

He expressed these views while addressing a seminar for formulating recommendations to revise and update the existing Master Plan for Lahore 2021 at LDA Community Centre, New Muslim Town on Saturday.

He said that revision of Master Plan 2021 had been kick started in this seminar by taking elected representatives, urban planners, developers and other stake holders on board. It will continue as an ongoing process for incorporating changing requirements and future needs of the people of provincial metropolis, he said.

Speaking on this occasion, LDA DG Ahad Cheema said that an advisory board for collecting and formulating practical proposals for Master Plan would be notified very soon. Regional planning of Lahore and nearby cities will be focused in the new Master Plan instead of district Lahore only. Either the jurisdiction of LDA will be expanded or a collective forum of relevant district governments will be established for this purpose, he added. Master Plan has to be a dynamic document and flexible enough for catering to the requirements of the future, he maintained.

MPAs Hafiz Mian Numan and Saif-ul-Malook Khokhar, civil officers like secretary local government Khizar Hayat Gondal, urban planners, architects and experts from various walks of life attended the seminar.

The speakers were of the view that socio-economic survey, land use survey and transport survey of Lahore should be carried out for assessing requirements of the people before chalking out a master plan. They said, “No new housing scheme should be allowed in the City before colonisation of existing housing schemes where thousands of plots are still lying vacant. Master Plan should be based on the principle of Disaster Risk Reduction and all the services providing agencies should plan and execute their projects in coordination with one another. Expansion of the city of Lahore should be considered in the eastern and northern parts of the city across the river Ravi. Satellite Towns should be established in the radius of 75 kilometres from Lahore for curbing the trend of migration to the provincial capital.

Shuttle train service should be introduced between Lahore and nearby cities for providing easy mode of transportation to the people of these cities so that they do not shift to Lahore permanently.”