RDA starts renovation of ancient bazaars

Localities will turn into food streets at night

Qaiser Shirazi August 17, 2020


The Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA) has officially kicked off the project to renovate four historical bazaars of the garrison city.

Running continuously for over two centuries, the old markets in Rawalpindi, including Bhabhra Bazaar, Raja Bazaar, Moti Bazaar and Sarafa Bazaar, would be renovated under the Urban Development Programme.

Experts will bring out the actual façade of the old buildings and make prominent the remnants of grills, doors, windows, woodwork and metal fittings giving the area an ancient ambiance.

Under the project, the shopping activities in the markets would continue until dusk and after that, these would be converted into recreational spots where people could sit and enjoy food with their families.

After sunset, there would be a ban on any kind of transport, public or private, inside the bazaar parameters, which would become food streets. People coming for a visit would have to park their cars at a distance.

The beautification experts and senior bureaucrats including Naeem Pasha and Kamran Lashari are assisting the RDA in the project.

In the initial phase, the project would renovate Sarafa and Bhabhra bazaars. The hanging internet, telephone, and other cables would be put in a conduit while the sites would be illuminated with beautiful and colorful lighting. The markets would be beautified with greenery and artificial waterfalls.

RDA would also install benches at different spots while a separate place would be allocated for the hookah smokers.

There will be different stalls set up that would offer local cuisines and delicacies as well as fast food. The buildings in the premises would be repainted in vibrant colors while the sewerage lines would be repaired and cleaned too.

In the second phase, Raja Bazaar and Moti Bazaar would be uplifted on the same pattern.

The development authority has taken different institutions including Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA), Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL), Water and Sanitation Authority (WASA), Parks and Horticulture Authority (PHA), Rawalpindi Metropolitan MCorporation and City Traffic Police (CTP) on board and the representatives are regularly participating in the meetings.

A meeting has been summoned on August 15 in which the Wapda officials would submit an estimation of the project relating to the induction of electric wires in a pipeline.

RDA Chairman Tariq Murtaza said that they were going to change the outlook of the garrison city with cleanliness and plantation. He added that the garrison soon would soon become a model city of the province.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 17th, 2020.


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