PKONWEB Report – Most highrises are in the country’s economic hub, Karachi, including the tallest one to-date: the 62-storey Bahria Icon Tower overlooking Arabian Sea.
Other major cities are catching up though, as urban migration surges and economic growth driven by consumerism and backed by a huge youth bulge transforms demography and financial landscape of major cities- 60 percent of the population represents it, according to 2017 census.
While capital Islamabad has three to boast of: the 26-storey Centaurus and One Constitution Avenue Tower 1 & 2, as well as the 24-storey Telecom Tower, Punjab’s capital Lahore soon will have its 45-storey skyscraper dotting the skyline.
Presently, the 17-storey Arfa Karim Tower stands out to be the tallest in Lahore.
Not any more. On Monday, the Lahore Development Authority (LDA) approved the plans for firstever highrise building in Johar Town’s Finance and Trade Center (FTC)- after departments concerned issued no objection certificates (NOCs). Once completed, the structure will be the second tallest in the country.
A private source said the high-rise, which will have a five-star hotel, commercial areas, and the headquarter of a leading private company, will be a 500-foot tall monolith, the second tallest hightech structure in the country, after a 62-storey (938-foot) Bahria building in the port city.
“We’ve not only accorded approval but also handed over the conceptual plans of the building to project owners on Monday. They will soon start the construction work,” LDA Chief Town Planner Nadeem Akhtar Zaidi said.
According to documents, the building will be on 44 kanals. The land allocated for the project is 18,645 Sqm. The approval was granted after the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), the Environment Department, Water and Sanitation Agency (Wasa) and the Traffic Engineering and Transport Planning Agency issued NOCs.
Similarly, other formalities, such as traffic impact and assessment, structure stability certificate, structure drawings, plans vetting reports, extra height charges, car parking agreement, etc. have been completed by the project executing agency.
Mr Zaidi said there was no provision of a helipad on top of the building. “The building to be constructed with top quality material using modern technology may have this facility if owners apply for this to the LDA,” he explained.
The building with three basements and 42-storeys, has parking space for 420 vehicles, while 16 per cent of the area allocation of car parking lots is for motorcycles. It will have a grey water treatment plant inhouse that will be used for chillers and horticulture and for rainwater recycling (collect, treat and recharge to the ground).
As per CAA’s NOC, the building (Punjab’s tallest building so far) shall not exceed 500 feet in height.
“The FTC is a special zone having special land use rules that allows construction of such highrises without any legal issue. Similarly, the underground infrastructure can easily bear the building needs, such as provision of water, discharge of sewerage, and availability of gas, electricity, telephone etc. So the area is 100 per cent fit for the project,” another senior LDA official who worked in the planning phase of the project said.
The top 20 tallest buildings of the country so far based in Karachi) include:
62-storey Bahria Icon Tower
34-storey Bakht Tower
34-storey Arkadians Tower
30-storey Ocean Tower
28-storey Center Point Tower
27-storey Mega G4 Corporate Tower
26-storey Coral Tower 1 and 2
25-storey Bahria Town Tower
25-storey Habib Bank Plaza
24-storey The Arkadians Tower B
23-storey UBL Tower
23-storey PRC Tower
22-storey JS Tower
19-storey Dolmen Tower