Lyari Expressway Resettlement Project
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Lyari Expressway Resettlement Project (LERP) is a civic project in Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan to provide replacement housing in developed suburbs for people displaced by the construction of the Lyari Expressway. Over 250,000 residents of the land near the Lyari River were left homeless by the construction of the highway, but provided land and compensation for relocation in areas including new developments Hawke's Bay, Baldia and Taiser Town.
Karachi is not only the largest city of Pakistan, it is also one of the most populated cities in the world. During the past six decades since Independence its population has swelled from a mere 250,000 to more than 15 million. As such, it constitutes ten per cent of the total population of the country. Due to uncontrolled influx of population from all parts of the country, the city has developed a multitude of problems – from shortage of potable water and dilapidated roads to hardships pertaining to housing, education and transport. Being an industrial and commercial hub, and the only city where two big ports are located, the trade in other cities is routed through Karachi. Transportation of industrial and commercial goods is also carried out through this city. It is for this reason that the traffic pressure on the roads and street of Karachi is enormous and is increasing day by day. One-third of the total automotive in the country is registered here. For the huge number of motor vehicles, the flow of traffic is hampered, causing environmental pollution and numerous difficulties for the citizens.
To facilitate the traffic in the city it has become imperative that the traffic headed for out- of-city places should not be allowed to ply on the city roads, and the transportation of good from the ports should be bypassed without transporting it through the city. It is only in this way that the traffic pressure could be eased off in the city. In this regard, the government planned a number of projects for the construction of bypasses and highways. Under the 1975–85 Master Plan, the Northern Bypass was presented but it was left incomplete for a number of reasons. Had it been completed by that time, the flow of traffic in the city would have eased off and all the heavy vehicular traffic would have headed directly towards the Superhighway instead of passing through the city. The citizens would have spared the pollution caused the heavy transport. In 1989, citizens groups had presented the Lyari Expressway along the Lyari River but this project too was shelved. The present government took these projects seriously and stepped towards their implementation.
At present, the Lyari Expressway and the Northern Bypass projects are on the priority list, and implementation has started on these projects. Lyari Expressway which is almost complete being built along the bank of the Lyari River, beginning from Mauripur and ending at Sohrab Goth will reduce traffic pressure on city roads.
The resettlement was started eight years back and is in final stages of its comp-letion. There are 5,434 plots in Hawksbay Site. 5,100 families have been given possession of their homes. During the first phase of resettlement, the people are being transferred to sectors 6, 9 and 10 of the Hawksbay Scheme 42. Provision of all amenities of life have been ensured here, that includes roads, water supply, sewerage, power transmission, installation of street lights, and facilities for transport, education, health, playgrounds, parks, community centre, shopping centre, etc. In the first phase completed and more than 5000 families have already settled here.
In the second phase of resettlement under way at Taiser Town, over 21,000 families have been given a plot of 80 sq-yd and Rs.50,000 each. Of these, some 15,000 families have built their homes and are comfortably living there. There is quality education available for every children of the shifted family. There is no education fee and the school children are provided free school uniform and books. In keeping with the vision for peoples welfare hundreds of children have been admitted into schools.
At present 40 schools, including a high school, are functioning in the newly resettlement sites of Hawksbay and Taiser Town, on behalf of Lyari Expressway Resettlement Project (LERP)“ summer schooling” is also organized during summer holidays so as to make holidays beneficial for children. In summer schooling, the children are imparted quality education while at the end, they are taken to a visit to Karachi’s historical and recreational places.
As per decision, anyone coming to site to take possession of plot, will be provided one plant and school admission form than and there so that right from the start an educational and environment-friendly atmosphere is built up.
In the newly resettlement sites, a trend has been set to mark national days with tree plantation. Pakistan Day was observed in the Lyari Expressway Resettlement Project (LERP) sites of Hawksbay and Taiser Town in a unique manner. It was celebrated by shiftees of Lyari Expressway who got their children admitted to schools as part of LERP efforts for promotion of education of children, who otherwise, could have been seen playing in the stinking environment if they had continued to live there in the river-bed and on its banks.
Under the program, groups of teachers and students both girls and boys were formed in Hawksbay and Taiser Town each group consisted of three teachers, three boys and three girls.
These groups went home to home, contacted the parents and their children and apprised them about the significance of knowledge and education. They got admission forms filled from such children who hitherto were not going to schools. As a result, a large number of children were admitted to schools in their respective areas. The girls were more enthusiastic and paid special attention to admission of their fellow girls not going to school.
The school children had started tree plantation drive in Hawksbay and Taiser Town putting special attention on national days such as independence Day, Pakistan Day. The inhabitants of Hawksbay and Taiser Town sites have started a new tradition together that whenever the construction of a new house commence, they offer thanksgiving prayer and plant a tree to make the occasion memorable for their bright future.
In the new resettlement sites, hawkers bazaar and shopping canters have also been set up to provide employment opportunities to local population and economic activities are fast growing there. The resettlement project have also provided health and medical facilities. Besides, government dispensaries at Hawksbay and Taiser Town, one dispensary each of Edhi, Alamgir Trust and Gospel are also functioning. In order to supply construction material to shiftees, shops of construction material have also been established to ensure supplies at a rate cheaper than the open market price. In the new resettlement sites, supply of electricity has also been ensured. Poles have been erected having road and street lights. Baldia site is spread over 145 acres where 2924 plots have been allocated for shiftees.
- Official Website
- Resettlement site emerging as model township
- Highway to Hell
- The People vs. Lyari Expressway (2002)
- Updates on the Lyari Expressway Evictions
- Lyari Expressway: a new land scam?
- Sprawling township emerges in Hawkesbay: Lyari Expressway affected
- Taiser Town attracts 309,300 applications