ISLAMABAD: The dream of owning a home by the journalists working in the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad is going to become reality soon as the development work in the first ever residential colony for the journalists is nearing completion within weeks time.
In the picturesque Loi Bher, situated some 20km from Zero Point, over 1600 kanals of land has been earmarked for more than 1300 members of the Rawalpindi-Islamabad Press Club. Each working journalist has been given a ten-marla plot.
The Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif will be the chief guest at a function this week to formally inaugurate the completion of the development work of the society.
The project started in 2006 with the allotment of land for the Rawalpindi-Islamabad Journalists’ Housing Society by the Punjab government.
The then Chief Minister of the Punjab Pervaiz Elahi inaugurated the development work on 1st of May 2007 by unveiling a plaque at a ceremony largely attended by the journalists.
At that time many had wondered that it could take years to develop as the whole area was hilly and uneven land.
But soon, huge machinery moved in and the contractor started the development work with levelling of the undulating land.
Basic needs of life including water, sewerage, Sui gas, roads, parks, markets, hospitals and place for graveyard have been completed in three sectors of this 4-sector residential colony for the journalists.
The estimated expenditures of the development would be over one billion rupees that also include under ground electricity cables.
Four water tanks, two under ground and two over-head, have been constructed to provided adequate supply of the water round the clock besides construction of a comprehensive sewerage system.
The capacity of the two under ground tanks will be 120,000 gallons each while the capacity of over-head water tanks will be 80,000 gallons each.
President Rawalpindi-Islamabad Press Club Mushtaq Minhas giving the details said the development work in sectors B,C and D has also completed while heavy machinery is being shifted to Sector A of the Colony presently. The development work in this sector will be completed within two months.
He said the development work includes levelling of the land, provision of Sui gas, water supply, sewerage, carpeted roads and boundary wall of the colony.
Laying down of under ground cables for electricity has also been started and it will be completed by Wapda by the end of January, he added.
Roads in sectors B,C, and D are being carpeted as the work for the provision of other facilities has also been completed.
Although the funds being released by the government for the development projected were delayed during November 2007 and August 2008 due to elections but the contractor made up for the delay.
Mushtaq Minhas said it is one of the fastest developing residential colony in the country because despite delays in the funds, the work has been completed in record time.
The journalists would be able to start construction of their houses from 1st of next February.
The colony will have 21 kms of small and big roads and the minimum width of the road is 40 feet while the main road leading to the colony is 150 feet wide.
The development work was being executed by Arshad & Company under the supervision of Punjab Housing and Urban Town Planning Agency (PHATA). The standard of the development work is even better than the adjacent housing schemes in the area.