KARACHI, Oct 11: Besides seven other infrastructure development projects, the Karachi Port Trust will undertake the construction of Rs20 billion 'Port Tower Complex', in collaboration with a Qatar-based company, the City Trading.

The project, to be launched on Oct 12, will be completed in a period of six years with a 1,400-feet-high tower, to be amongst the 10 tallest buildings of the world, which will be a monument in the city.

The salient features of the mega project, being undertaken by the KPT as one of the stake-holders in the development of the city, were explained at a high-level briefing held at the Governor's House.

The briefing was chaired by Sindh Governor Dr Ishratul Ibad Khan, and attended, among others, by Sindh Chief Minister Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim and Federal Ports and Shipping Minister Babar Ghauri.

Sindh Finance Minister Syed Sardar Ahmed, Home Minister Rauf Siddiqi, Transport and Labour Minister Adil Siddiqi, Advisor to chief minister Waseem Akhtar, KPT Chairman Vice-Admiral Ahmed Hayat, Chief Secretary Aslam Sanjrani and other senior officials were also present at the meeting.

In his briefing, KPT General Manager (Planning) informed the meeting that the entire project would comprise the tower and an Expo Centre, residential complexes, community centre, shopping area and a hotel.

The complex would have speedy lifts for the visitors to have a eye view of the city from a revolving restaurant at its top, he said. The complex will have a covered area of 1.510 million sq-feet, including the low-rise residential complex of 0.3375 million sq-feet, high-rise residential blocks of 3.210 million sq-feet, shopping area and hotel of 1.675 million sq-feet.

The total 90-acre land required for the project would be made available through reclamation of the sea, the MD added. Speaking on the occasion, Governor Ibad said that it was for the first time that Karachi-based Federal organizations had been sensitized to play their due role towards the development and beautification of the city.

Whether it is Steel Mill, KPT, PQA, EPZ or other organizations, they had started contributing towards the city development and were bringing in useful projects, he said.

Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim said that the federal government organizations were carrying out these projects on behalf of the provincial government on President Gen Musharraf's directive.

He scotched rumours about differences between the governor and the chief minister, and told newsmen that they both were working together for the cause of the city and the rest of the province.

In the briefing, it was informed that the KPT would contribute an investment of Rs3.16 billion in the shape of 30-acre land for the tower and the Expo Centre, 30.5-acre land for low-rise residential complex, 21.5 acres for high-rise complex and 15.8 acres for shopping area and hotel.

The low-rise residential complex would comprise 75 units of 4,500 sq-ft each, while the high-rise complex would have A and B categories of apartments, it was added.

The A-category apartments will comprise of 9 blocks with 450 apartments each, on 3,666 sq-feet. All the blocks will have 25 storeys. KPT chairman said that the investment was being brought by the City Trading of Qatar, while the KPT would invest in the shape of land. He said Rs15 to 16 billion would be raised through various consortiums.

He told a questioner that the project would generate huge employment opportunities, as some 40,000 workers, along with 137 industries would remain associated with the project for six years.

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