The Executive Board of the Defence Housing Authority (DHA) on Monday took serious notice of the non-functional status of the DHA Cogen Power and Desalination Plant, which has exacerbated the problem of water scarcity in the DHA.

Commander 5 Corps Lt-Gen Muhammad Zahir Ul Islam chaired the DHAís Executive Board meeting as its president. The meeting was held at the Corps Headquarters, where the new corps commander in his capacity as president Executive Board (PEB) DHA took oath of his office.

DHA officials informed the participants of the meeting that despite having no role in the management of the Defence desalination plant, the DHA had adopted a proactive role in the past two months and a number of meetings had been held with all stakeholders.

The DHA was looking for all possible options to revive the project at the earliest; however, the process would take time, and a lot of investment would have to be made, they said.

The corps commander stressed the need to take residents on board while undertaking any mega development-cum- infrastructural improvement venture in DHA for the residents. He said that residentsí associations should work in tandem with the DHA to achieve the goal of an efficient, vibrant and dynamic civic life.

The Executive Board was also informed that a Consultant Association of experts was engaged in preparations for a unique master plan for the recently launched DHA City Karachi project on the Super Highway. The board was further informed that efforts were being made to include the Malir Expressway along the Malir River in the City District Government Karachiís 2020 Transportation Plan. This road, connecting DHA City Karachi to the metropolis, would significantly reduce the distance of the DHA City project from Karachi.

The Executive Board was given a briefing on FAR (Floor Area Ratio) by experts who conceptually explained its impact on civic services (sewerage, water and electricity, etc.), its impact on traffic volume and its effect on environment in the area. The study was necessitated on a popular demand of some owners of a plot on Korangi Road who wanted to build high-rise offices-cum-commercial towers at the location.

The Executive Board was informed that development work in Sector B of DHA Phase VIII would be completed by March 2011 and the area would be opened for construction accordingly. The Executive Board also approved an incentive scheme of waiver of surcharge in sectors A & B of DHA Phase VIII for the plot owners who would pay a lump sum of their outstanding dues between January 15, 2011 and March 31, 2011.

The board meeting also approved an amendment to the DHA Building Bylaws prohibiting construction and designing of the main gate of a bungalow in the centre of a plot to discourage the tendency to construct duplex houses on a plot.

Source: The News