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ISLAMABAD, Sept 29: The city managers have allocated a piece of land in Fatima Jinnah Park for installation of a grid station to provide electricity to the under-construction Centaurus Tower in Sector F-8, Blue Area commercial centre and some residential sectors.

“We have allocated land for the grid station and asked Iesco to start work on the project,” said CDA spokesman Ramzan Sajid.

Whatever cost is required for the grid station would be paid by the CDA, he added.

Negating an impression that the CDA’s poor financial condition did not allow such a project, the spokesman said: “The financial position of the CDA is not so bad that it cannot bear the cost of a grid station.”

When contacted, Iesco spokesman Farooq Ahmed said the cost of the grid station would have to be borne by the CDA but the authority has so far not paid any amount to the company.

Sources in the civic agency said the CDA had decided to expedite the installation of the grid station for Centaurus after Board of Investment (BOI) took notice of the authority’s lukewarm attitude towards provision of basic amenities promised to Pak-Gulf Construction (a consortium of a Saudi Arabian and a Pakistani company) at the time of allotment of 6.5 acre plot for the residential-commercial and hotel complex in 2005. The plot was auctioned at the ever highest bid of Rs6.5 billion.

The BOI told the CDA that its negligence in fulfillment of promises could badly affect foreign investment on Centaurus because it was the only mega construction project being executed through foreign investment in the country at present.

The $350 million Centaurus is a mega ‘mix-use’ 37-storey tower comprising an international standard mega mall, ultra-luxurious apartments and penthouses, modern corporate offices and a high-end deluxe hotel. However, a source in the CDA said the authority, which was already facing acute financial crisis, could not bear the cost of the grid station and was using delaying tactics in providing facilities to the complex.

About 65 per cent work on the complex is reportedly complete as the structures of three residential/commercial towers have been raised.

As the CDA failed to provide electricity to the project, the developers used six power generators of 1,000 KV each to meet the requirements. The construction firm has demanded of the CDA to pay the amount they spent on running the six generators.

The owners of the complex have also asked the CDA bosses that they could bear the cost of installation of the grid station provided the amount was deducted from the installations of the cost of the land the company had to pay to the CDA in 15 years.

In January this year, the towers management had informed the civic agency that they needed around 16 megawatts of electricity to energise the multi-storey building.

The cost of 20 MW electric supply, which was estimated at Rs252 million in 2007, has now shot up to Rs540 million.