Karachi: Notwithstanding the numerous previous decisions to make the CDGK car parking plaza Saddar functional, a meeting presided over by Commissioner Karachi has decided to make functional the lone car parking plaza building of Pakistan fully functional in the larger public interest.
This first multi-storied vehicle parking plaza was constructed in July 2009 with a vision to end chronic traffic jams in Saddar area by banning parking on roads and streets. Completed with a cost of Rs 650 million, this mega project is considered as a textbook example of failure of bureaucracy in Karachi to ensure proper utilization of projects on which huge amount of taxpayers’ money is spent.
The Saddar parking building has 11 floors, seven of them reserved for parking, two floors houses a Shopping Plaza while remaining two are consist of basement. This plaza can accommodate 700 cars and 500 motorcycles. It is fully computerized with surveillance, video cameras and also equipped with heavy elevators and standby generator. However, sadly due to bad governance this mega parking plaza is severely underutilized and its modern two-floor shopping plaza is never utilized despite passage of long six years. The cause of the failure of this mega project is that the city administration had failed to declare Saddar a no-parking zone, which is prerequisite for making this mega project functional.
However, the meeting presided over by the commissioner Shoaib Siddiqui decided that Saddar area would be declared no parking zone. Traffic police would take action against vehicles parked in Saddar area. A check post district police and traffic police would be set up near the parking plaza. Moreover, encroachments and Patharas in the area would be removed.
Interestingly, despite all tall claims and decisions of the government, hundreds of Patharas are present in Saddar, particularly New Preedy Street area where the car parking plaza is situated. Illegal car parking could be observed on any day in front of the market opposite the plaza building.
The government has even failed to get opened the chocked gutter line in front of the car parking plaza building despite the passage of two long years, besides the open manhole in front of the car parking plaza continues lacking gutter cover, posing grave threat for traffic.