In a bid to construct new public places and enhance the existing ones to transform Karachi into a more productive, economically stable, and livable megacity, the government of Sindh, with the financial support of the World Bank, announced the Karachi Neighbourhood Improvement Project (KNIP) back in 2017.
More About Karachi Neighbourhood Improvement Project (KNIP)
KNIP was devised on the basis of the Karachi City Diagnostic and Transformation Strategy, which was prepared by the World Bank at the request of the provincial government. It analysed the accumulated data and presented a detailed report on the megacity’s economy, livability, and sustainability of urban infrastructure. KNIP is also in line with the Pakistan Vision 2025, which aims for the sustainable and eco-friendly development of all the major metropolitan areas in the country.
The survey also found that the quality of the urban environment in Karachi is rapidly deteriorating due to the lack of properly maintained public spaces and infrastructure. The infrastructure development under KNIP is being carried out with an objective to not only enhance recreational spots in the city but also to create new employment opportunities and boost the local economic growth
Several public infrastructure projects have already been completed and many are still in the pipeline. In this blog, we are going to take a closer look at all the major infrastructure developments that have been planned under the World Bank-funded KNIP initiative.
The development of a fully-featured public space like People’s Square within the most populated and central business district of Karachi is one of the biggest achievements of KNIP. Falling in the jurisdiction of Saddar Town and the old city area, People’s Square is located right next to the National Museum of Pakistan at the intersection of Strachan Road and Shahrah-e-Kamal Attaturk.
Along with serving as a public recreation spot, People’s Square has also been equipped with an underground vehicle parking space, which can house more than 350 vehicles including cars and motorcycles at a time. Parking has always been a big issue in this bustling part of the city and this new facility intends to solve this problem once and for all. If you want to learn more about the newly opened People’s Square in Karachi, read our detailed post on it.
Development Work in Ibrahim Hyderi, Korangi
Another major infrastructure improvement project that has been undertaken under the KNIP initiative is the restoration of greenery and public spaces in the area of Ibrahim Hyderi, Korangi. According to the official records, more than 2000 trees have been planted in the locality and hundreds of trees have been saved.
The footpaths and other green spaces in the neighbourhood have been recently enhanced to give them a more attractive and colourful appearance. A 4.9-kilometre section of Korangi Road starting from the Ibrahim Hyderi Village and going all the way to the Fishermen Chowrangi has been reconstructed to beautify the area and ease traffic congestion.
Inauguration of Fishermen Chowrangi (Rehabilitation of Old Coastguards Roundabout)
Fishermen Chowrangi, which was previously called the Old Coastguards roundabout, has also been revamped and inaugurated under the KNIP initiative. Ever since its opening in January 2021, it has become one of the most recognized landmarks in the area.
The launch ceremony of this monument was attended by high-profile people including the Chairman of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and Chief Minister of Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah.
Boat Basin to Be Transformed into a Modern Food Street
According to recent development, the Sindh government is planning to transform Boat Basin into a fully-featured food street. The announcement was made by Karachi Administrator Barrister Murtaza Wahab, who also visited the area accompanied by other top government officials to review the ongoing development work.
Wahab also issued directives to the concerned authorities to start construction work and begin with the process of renovating. As per the official details, Boat Basin food street will have a main pedestrian-friendly walkway and other recreational facilities for the convenience of visitors.
The Boat Basin Food Street development project is being carried out under the Karachi Neighbourhood Improvement Project, which is funded by the World Bank. It is expected to be completed within seven to eight months, according to the statement made by a senior official of the provincial government.
Located in the area of Clifton, Boat Basin is already one of the most famous night spots in Karachi. The ongoing food street project will further increase the popularity of this place. There are going to be selected entry and exit points for the upcoming food street on Boat Basin.
There you have it — a complete overview of the Karachi Neighbourhood Improvement Project (KNIP) and its affiliated public infrastructure development work.
Well, as of now, Karachi needs more projects focusing on the enhancement of public places, greenbelts, and the city’s transportation system. The concerned development authorities should now be focusing more on sustainable development trends like other megacities around the world. It is the only way to make our crowded urban centres more livable and environmentally friendly.
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On a side note, you may also like to read about the Karachi Transformation Plan — a project that has been conceived and funded by the federal government under the leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan.
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