Your next drive might break the axle of your car

Published: September 16, 2012
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A pothole on the West Service Road in G-11. PHOTO: WAQAS NAEEM

A pothole on the West Service Road in G-11. PHOTO: WAQAS NAEEM

ISLAMABAD: 

Driving on the West Service Road in G-11 can be expensive. Last time Raja Haqdar, a resident of G-11/2, drove down the road, his car’s front axle broke, causing him a loss of Rs2,000.

“I tried my best to avoid the pothole but in vain,” he said.

The road that connects the Kashmir Highway to sector F-11 is marred by rain-filled potholes and craters, some of which span over several feet. It is not the only bruised and battered road in the federal capital, but definitely one of the worst.

The incoming traffic lane is in such a poor state that drivers are forced on to the opposing side, while manholes along the road are raised above the tarmac, further restricting the flow of traffic.

Residents and shopkeepers in G-11 said they have complained to the Capital Development Authority (CDA) several times, but are yet to get any positive response.

“The officials don’t even care. They are insensitive to our plight,” said Faqir Hussain, who runs a hardware shop near the road and lives nearby. He claimed that the road wasn’t carpeted properly when it was built two years back.

Another resident, Khalid Khan, said the only maintenance work visible on the road has been done by the people themselves.

“Some of the shopkeepers collected funds from the community and built manholes near the shops to drain out the rainwater,” he explained.

CDA spokesperson Masudur Rehman said some of the roads in the city had been affected by the monsoon rains, adding that the civic agency plans to initiate repair work once the current spell of rain was over.

While some roads might have been damaged by the rains, roads in several areas, especially the G, H and I sectors, have been awaiting repair work for a long time.

For instance, the road leading to the International Islamic University Islamabad through H-9 and H-10 is showing signs of wear and tear, while cracks looking like a spider’s web can be seen at several places on the Kashmir Highway near G-9.

Despite all of that, road maintenance seems to be on the CDA’s back burner. According to Rehman, the CDA’s financial crunch has forced the authority to prioritise on projects, and roads didn’t make the list in 2011.

“Last year, we had planned to utilise Rs372 million for roads, but the funds haven’t been released yet,” he said.

While the CDA mulls over its plans, it seems the residents of G-11 can only keep on driving for now, with the hope that they avoid the potholes every time.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 16th, 2012.

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Reader Comments (3)

  • Acorn Guts
    Sep 16, 2012 - 4:20PM

    It’s not about repairing roads, it is about making them right the first time around. Here in UK we receive rain 366 days out of 365 in a year, my street was built in 1993 and has recently be re-carpeted (2010) and it still had no cracks, bumps, pots or loose gravel.

    Let the private contractors put down the tarmac, and have them guarantee the usability of road in clear words for a fixed term, say 3-5 years. Anything happens in between and they honour the guarantee to fix it free of cost, or they get their licenses cancelled/fined.

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  • Ammar Zaheer
    Sep 16, 2012 - 6:17PM

    Kudos!!!

    Imagine the rainy days when you can’t even figure out the potholes while driving because the roads are filled with water … This road should probably be closed forever (if they cant do anything about it) … been in F11/2 since 2006 and this road has just gone from bad to worse to worst … I personally havent gone on the road for 2 years now, take a detour (from a road between the G11 and G10 roads) every day to work.

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  • isloo boy
    Sep 19, 2012 - 11:34AM

    they usually repair roads in winterRecommend

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