Bangladesh to redevelop historic capital

Commercial high-rises set to sprout in Old Dhaka

Dhaka, Bangladesh. Lumenite/Shutterstock

The Bangladeshi government is committed to redeveloping the historic, decaying part of Dhaka, UNB reported.

Authorities are formulating a plan to buy out owners of small plots in Old Dhaka, also known as Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC), and allot flats to the landowners as compensation, according to Housing and Public Works Minister SM Rezaul Karim.

Several plots will be consolidated to leave space for commercial high-rises in the vein of urban planning schemes in Japan, Malaysia and Singapore, said Rezaul. “We’re interested to follow them by erecting high-rises in Old Dhaka based on the redevelopment system.”

Decrepit buildings will be torn down, albeit not simultaneously, the minister further revealed to UNB, citing a meeting with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and DSCC Mayor Sayed Khokon. “We won’t destroy all the buildings at the same time … We’ll reshape the area.”

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The minister’s comments come on the heels of recent fires in Old Dhaka. Most structures in the area violate building codes and do not have any authorised plans.

The ministry had ordered urban planning agency Rajdhani Unnyayan Kartripakkhya to conduct a feasibility study for redeveloping the 11 wards of DSCC.

“We expect to get the study report soon for redeveloping Old Dhaka in a planned way for providing better services to the locals and making the area less vulnerable to earthquake and fire,” Rezaul told New Age earlier this month.