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LAHORE: The government has formally notified the amended and approved master plan of the Lahore division by publishing it in the Punjab Gazette.

“After being notified the amended master plan has now come into force for Lahore and its districts,” Lahore Development Authority’s Chief Metropolitan Planner (CMP) Waheed Butt told Dawn on Friday.

Under the amended plan, the developers/sponsors of housing societies, projects etc will now have to seek necessary no objection certificate (NOC) from the irrigation department regarding flood-prone areas and adhere to flood routes/area requirements are specified by the agencies and departments concerned.

NOC from irrigation dept now must for property developers

The amended plan covers Lahore city and districts of Kasur, Sheikhupura and Nankana Sahib but it doesn’t contain the planning related to expansion of industry after the government decided to incorporate this portion into it at a later stage by taking the industrialists on board.

The LDA, in its July 14 governing body meeting, had approved the amended master plan under the LDA master plan rules-2014.

According to the gazette notification, the whole division is taken as the project area and all existing integrated master plans, outline development plans and agroville development plans are taken as a unified master plan for Lahore division (integration of existing urban development plans and remaining areas) for proposed amendments.

“Wherever possible, the land uses of built-up areas as proposed in the existing master plan, outline development plans and agroville development plans are kept intact. The land uses are proposed for housing and special development zones,” the notification signed and issued by LDA Director General Nabeel Javed reads.

For further integrated urban growth for housing land use in potential growth sites, land has been allocated in shape of circles and semicircles, following the compact growth principle to provide definite areas for further special growth.

“In addition to the existing infrastructure and transport system, bypasses and structure plan roads have been proposed within the project area to promote better connectivity and linkages,” the notification states.

The developers/sponsors, who have purchased land for housing schemes in the proposed agriculture area at the site LHR-4 and have submitted valid ownership documents prior to cut of date published in the public notice of April 2, 2016, would be considered for approval of housing schemes. It mentions that the army restricted/semi-restricted area shall be taken as per the army policy.

It may be mentioned that the portion related to expansion of industry in the designated areas has not been mentioned in the plan after the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) submitted a proposal which is under study these days. The LCCI had floated the proposal keeping in view the potential of further industrialisation due to enhanced economic cooperation between Pakistan and China so that the LDA could expand the industrial zoning of Lahore division.

According to the proposal, the LCCI had suggested 5,000 metres of land along both sides of Lahore’s major roads be declared industrial corridor and sought notifying the industrial zones. The proposal also sought exemption from payment of commercialisation fee for existing industrial units along these major roads and development of new industrial zones away from densely populated residential areas

“The matter related to the proposed industrialisation in the master plan has been put on hold, keeping in view the LCCI’s proposal regarding expansion of new industry corridors. However, a survey in this regard is underway on our part and it will be completed soon in association with the LCCI,” said Mr Waheed Butt.

Published in Dawn, July 30th, 2016