TPD Exclusive: CM Buzdar to head development authority for Walton Airport & adjoining areas

LONDON/LAHORE: The Lahore Central Business District Development Authority will be headed by Chief Minister Usman Buzdar, after the District Development Ordinance 2021 is passed in the Punjab Assembly.

The new authority will have the power to acquire and develop the land in Walton Airport and adjoining areas.

Azhar Mashwani with Fayyaz ul Chohan and CM Usman Buzdar in a meeting.

In an exclusive conversation with The Pakistan Daily, Azhar Mashwani from the Chief Minister’s office said: “This new authority is set up under Prime Minister Imran Khan’s vision for Lahore’s central business district. The area around Walton airport is quite large and this authority has been set up to regulate it.”

Mashwani confirmed that the hangars from the Walton airport would be relocated elsewhere, once the ordinance was passed.

The Lahore Development Authority (LDA) already regulates real estate regulation and development in the Lahore district.

When asked whether there would be any clash between the new authority and LDA, the chief minister’s office said that the new authority would only be for Walton and the adjoining areas and thus, both authorities would operate independently.

The new authority will promote vertical construction, “while maintaining the highest environmental standards, quality of life and modern facilities so as to develop a healthy and prosperous business community in the area,” according to a draft of the legislation.

The authority will have the power to purchase and sell land as well as impose a fee.

Speaking exclusively to The Pakistan Daily, Chief Minister Usman Buzdar’s focal person, Aftab Ahmed said: “Overseas Pakistanis would greatly benefit from this new authority and can securely investment and enjoy international level facilities in their own country.”

Commenting on the development, construction magnate, Ahmad Naseem who runs Homemakers, a construction firm said: “Located in the centre of Lahore, this area has a lot of potential, for both industrial and commercial purpose. If planned and executed properly, in my opinion people will move here due to the close proximity with the surge of offices located in Gulberg, Kalma Chowk and Cavalry Ground.”

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