Islamabad the Capital City

Topics: Islamabad, Pakistan, Konstantinos Apostolos Doxiadis Pages: 17 (5008 words) Published: May 7, 2012
Projects Islamabad the Capital of Pakistan 1. INTRODUCTION Many were the reasons for which Pakistan needed a new capital city. During the first stages of the life of the new State it was natural that Karachi should have been selected as the capital, since it was a large city and a convenient centre of sea and air transportation. This was not, however, a satisfactory solution from points of view of climate, tradition and the existing buildings, which were not adequate in number or to the standards required by a capital. The layout and structure of the existing port city did not allow it to take on the functions of a modern capital. On the other hand, the influx of refugees intensified the existing problems and created new ones.

Fig. 1. Map of Pakistan

The government of Pakistan decided to cope with the situation by creating a new capital and proceeded toward this end in a systematic manner. By decision of H.E. the President of Pakistan, Field Marshal Mohammed Ayub Khan, a special commission was established to study this problem having as its chairman Major General A.M. Yahya Khan, Chief of the General Staff. This committee had its first session in February 1959, under the chairmanship of General Yahya, and during this session nine subcommittees were set up. In February 1959 H.E. The President of Pakistan honoured Dr. C. A. Doxiadis by naming him advisor to the Special Commission for the Location of the Capital and in compliance with a request from the President and from the chairman of the commission, a report was issued by Dr. Doxiadis with reference to this problem, in an effort to incorporate the knowledge and the experience of the members of the committees as well as of that of each committee as a whole. The result of this report was that two areas were suggested for the new capital, one outside Karachi and the other to the north of Rawalpindi.

Fig. 2. Islamabad. Model of the area

On the basis of reports and recommendations of the Commission for the Location of the Capital, H.E. President Mohammed Ayub Khan decided in favour of the site North of Rawalpindi, on the Potwar Plateau and made a public announcement to this effect in June 1959. On July the 2nd, 1959 Major General A.M. Yahya Khan requested Dr. Doxiadis to prepare and submit a report in order to facilitate the task of the commission in preparing the next stages of the work, especially regarding the setting up of a commission for building the new capital and setting up a programme of action. During late July and early August 1959, Dr. Doxiadis visited the site of the capital and, as a result, the report "Impressions from the site - The necessary data" was issued.


In September 1959, the government of Pakistan decided to establish the Federal Capital Commission for the preparation of the master plan and programme of the new capital. Simultaneously, Doxiadis Associates were appointed as consultants to the Federal-Capital Commission. Fourteen sub-committees, later named committees, were appointed during the first session of the Federal-Capital Commission, who issued a number of reports in connection with the surveys of the existing conditions in the capital area. Following the decision of the government of Pakistan to entrust Doxiadis Associates with the design of the new capital of Pakistan, the first team of experts of the consultant arrived at Rawalpindi early in November 1959 and a methodical collection of data was started, in close collaboration with the Federal-Capital Commission and Pakistani experts. Another team of experts also started work in Athens under the leadership of Dr. C. A. Doxiadis on the study and classification of all collected and available data. A most important milestone in the history of the capital was the decision taken on February 24th, 1960 by H. E. the President and his Cabinet to give the New Capital of Pakistan the name of ISLAMABAD (the City of Islam). It can be considered that the New capital of Pakistan was born...
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