‘The Case of Lahore, Pakistan – A Mega-City Bursting at the Seams’

This abstract has open access
Abstract Summary
The presentation and paper will study the ‘Urban Dynamics’ of Lahore, Pakistan. A city with over 12 million people. Lahore is over 4,000 years old, and the historic and cultural capital of Pakistan, a veritable museum in its cultural and architectural manifestations. Increasing pressure of urbanization has led to a city that has no defined boundaries, and is expanding every year, taking in more and more agricultural land. The infrastructure cannot support the existing footprint of the city. The planning methodologies are dysfunctional and ad-hoc, based on a quick fix theory. This has resulted in a chaotic frenzy, where over 80% do not have access to clean drinking water or sanitation facilities. Lahore is also the most polluted city in the world, comparative in ration to Delhi. The vegetable, fruit, food, water and air are ‘toxic’ and ‘carcinogenic’. The existing situation warrants an evacuation, as AQI levels are beyond hazardous. The city of Lahore is in a ‘Health Emergency’. Social and environmental justice is imperative in this city and the way it needs to be planned. The presentation will record and bring facts to the table for discussion and exploration around an ‘Elevated Metro Train Project’ which is currently being built, and has illegally destroyed historic communities, violated international and local rules and laws, and threatens over 35 heritage sites, including a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The quality of life for people in this city is being irreversibly damaged, and needs to be reversed through measures that bring the focus on ground realities, people and their needs. This involves understanding governance and master planning dynamics and migration to the city. The presentation will be made on behalf of an NGO, the Lahore Bachao Tehreek [Save Lahore Movement] which was formed by civil society to raise their voice to have access to basic human needs and human rights in the city, most of which are given to them in the constitution of the country. The presentation will also bring many critical overlapping and cross-cutting factors relating to perception and reality. The notion of ‘Development’, which needs to be re-defined and understood in the context of human development. The role of the High Court and Supreme Court of Pakistan will be discussed as the Judiciary has pro-actively taken Suo Motos to address and understand the above issues through the voice of the citizens of Lahore. The subject of citizen participatory democracy for a better quality of life for all will be discussed. Issues of inclusiveness, equity and sustainability and governance will be the core of the discussion. For the first time, this historic precedent has brought together the legislature, executive, judiciary and civil society, creating a unique model and a learning tool for others.
Abstract ID :
ISO484
Submission Type
Convener
,
Lahore Bachao Tehreek

Similar Abstracts by Type

Abstract ID
Abstract Title
Abstract Topic
Submission Type
Primary Author
ISO532
5: Smart futures and sustainability: planning for innovation
Case Study/Research Project
Ari Krisna Mawira Tarigan
ISO618
3: Liveable places and healthy cities: planning for people
Case Study/Research Project
Kate Holmquist
ISO456
4: Knowledge economies and identity: planning for culture
Case Study/Research Project
Mr Benjamin Scheerbarth
ISO59
3: Liveable places and healthy cities: planning for people
Case Study/Research Project
Amira Badran
ISO528
3: Liveable places and healthy cities: planning for people
Case Study/Research Project
Niken Prawestiti
ISO338
3: Liveable places and healthy cities: planning for people
Case Study/Research Project
Jeh Chan
ISO149
5: Smart futures and sustainability: planning for innovation
Case Study/Research Project
raana saffari
ISO324
3: Liveable places and healthy cities: planning for people
Case Study/Research Project
Shirley Maraya
ISO255
6: Changing environment and risks: planning for resilience
Case Study/Research Project
Manoranjan Ghosh