LAHORE – Instead of relocating the Badami Bagh bus stand, the City District Government Lahore (CDGL) has planned to shift some of the inter-city routes to a new terminal, Pakistan Today has learnt.
According to District Officer (DO) General Inter-City Bus Stand Tariq, the project to shift the Badami Bagh General Bus Stand is still in the planning phase and once things are finalised, the project will gain pace. He said that some places are under consideration for the project but nothing has been finalised yet. He said instead of shifting the entire bus stand, some of the routes would be transferred to new places. Earlier, CDGL had come up with the proposal of splitting the bus stand into three terminals at Shahdra, Multan Road and Thokar Niaz Baig. While in the beginning, entire relocation of the bus stand on the outskirts of the city somewhere near Ring Road had been planned.
On the other hand, the transporters complain of not being taken into confidence on updates of the project. They want themselves on board as well in planning of the shift. All Pakistan Transport Owners Association Chairman Azam Khan Niazi said “This is the matter of our cow, and we should be asked where we want to tie it.” The General Inter-City Bus Stand DO said the shifting was planned to reduce traffic congestion in the area. The city has seen an unplanned expansion in the past and now the stand is situated inside a residential area and markets, he added.
Another reason to shift the bus stand is said to be the disastrous effects of heavy traffic on cultural heritage of Lahore. Art and culture experts say that the vibration caused by heavy traffic is gradually damaging the cultural places situated near the bus stand i.e. Lahore Fort and Badshahi Mosque. Calling it a ‘cancer’ for the cultural heritage of the walled city of Lahore, former project manager of WCL Orya Maqbool Jan said that the auto market and traffic vehicles were threatening the population and culture of the area. Former Lahore commissioner Khusro Pervez had planned to relocate the stand on the outskirts of the city. He wanted a complete report of the plan in a week but later owing to objections from the transporters, the move was delayed.