Construction Date: 2002 ?
Completion Date: N/A
Excavation Initiation Date: None
Excavation Completion Date: None
Demolition Date: 2009
Client: Parks & Horticulture Authority (PHA)/LDA
Building Style: Colonial Era/Vernacular Architecture
Building Type: Residential + Commercial + Public Space
Building Usage: Houses/Shops/Food Street/Tourist Spot
Height: Max. +30'-0"
No. of Blocks: +80
Location: Gawalmandi, Nisbat Road Intersection, Near Mayo Hosipital, Lahore
The city of Lahore which is also called the heart of Pakistan, is famous for the livelihood of its people... these people, on the other hand, boost of their livelihood as the cosequence of the food they eat... .this has led to the name of lahore in close association with food and delicacies.
lahore is a historical city... in the past it attracted many foreign rulers, due to its beauty and important military location... that is why it saw many dynasties come and go and finally it became the capital of the mughal empire... all the rulers who came into this city brought along with them their cultures from regions as far as central Asia, Asia minor, Afghanistan, Iran and finally England.... as this phenomenon enriches the culture of a locality in its customs and values, so does it bring along new foods into it... the people of lahore who were fond of sports and healthy activites easily updated these exotic foods and eventually in the 19th century lahore saw its residents entertaining themselves with foods from all over the world.
specal places in the walled city of lahore were dedicated for this purpose where the gourmets of food would come and eat to their taste. the housewives living in the upper order storeys of the houses with "jharokas" would order these delecacies through small boys of the food shops who would come at appointed hours.
in the colconial period, the city had expanded so much that the owners of these food shops developed a new settlement outside the walled city to cater for the requirements of the people...since most of these shopkeepers traded in dairy products, and hence farmed buffaloes, so this place came to be known as GOWALMANDI.
THE IDEA OF FOOD STREET
the idea of food street came to mr Kamran Lashari, the chairman of tourism development corporation of punjab and the project itself came as a joint venture between LDA and TDCP...different designers and architects gave their proposals for the conceived idea of the renovation and modernization of gowalmandi into a modern dining place serving both the tourists and the residents of lahore...it was originally conceived as just like a food festival, a part of the fifteen hundred years of celebration of the city of lahore... Mr Irfan Ghani did most of the designing and lighting plus decorations...he planned gawalmandi into food street while keeping the traditional and cultural scenario in his mind..the architectural elements of lahore were embedded in the planning of food street while enhancing the hospitality of the rish pakistani culture...at the beginning this food festival was a complete sucess, which was appreciated by a multitude of tourists from all over the world and the patrons of food from lahore....the response was so good that the organizers of food street decided to let this festival be a permanent feature...now this well planned feature originally meant to be a temporary festival was transformed into a permanent feature without taking the residents of gawalmandi into confidence and wiothout consulting the designer of the food street...this has led to major urban related problems.... to have an analysis and solution of these problems it is necessary to know how the changes were made in gawalmandi to transform in into food street.
THE TRAFFIC OF FOOD STREET
since food street lies in a congested part of the old lahore, there was a major difficulty to solve the traffic problems of the visitors and the passers by..the motorcyclists were provided with a parking stand on the north side of the street...the car drivers can park their cars on the south side at their own risk...the parking often stretches from the nisbet road chowk to Lukshmi chowk at the mercy of car thieves...at the working hours no vehicle can enter the food street as the gates at the entrances are closed..the bike of a poor resdent of gawalmandi is not even an exception to the tyrannical rule..if they want to take their vehicles to thei place they have to make a complete detour from chunamandi or through narrow lanes emerging out of lukshmi chowk...
THE FUNCTIONING OF FOOD STREET
to understand and solve the problems of the food street it is important to have an insight of the activities of the food street...the activites of the shopkeepers, the residents and the visitors comprise the functioning of the food street...the activites of the food street start with its cleaning..the sewwpers of the municipality come at early hours in the morning...when thay have finished cleaning, the shopkeepers start with their shops...out of them the shops dealing in the dairy products are the mojor ones becoz the ppl living in the adjoiing areas get the provisions for their breakfast from these shops...the shopkeeprs in turn bring their materials from markets, farms stc..all this time the gates of the food street are kept open for the convenience of the shopkeepers and the pedestrians...by this time the residents of gowlamandi are ready to go to work...time passes and the trucks of the municipality come to take the garbage of the shops and the houses....now the traffic of the city is at its peak and is coming from all sides....since food street has a centralized location, so many vehicles pass through it to go to the other side....before this the tongas and cars etc were amongst those that litteres the whole street...afterwards their entry onto the food street was banned...
the shopkeepers of the food shops keep on preparing for the lunchtime while all this traffic is passing at the day time...since their cooking implemetns etc are right in front of their shops, sp the smoke and the pollution of the traffic create hygienic problems...
when the working ppl who have to eat outside come to the food street for luch, have to cross a road full of traffic to go to a particluar shop...
before the widening of the street, it was not a public wsy for the traffic, but now it is open to traffic at daytime, which causes a big pollution and nuisance problem for the ppl living in the upper storeys of the shops and the adjoining lanes...
after lunchtime, the larger part of the activites of the food street start, as the shopkeepers have to prepare for the guests who would come in the evening...the administrators of the food st. are preparing to close the gates of the street of the street..the gates are closed at 5 p.m. after this time no vehicle can enter or remain in the food st...any parked car in the food st, would have to be taken away with a fork lifter of the traffic police...
even a resident of the food street or a shopkeeper cannot take his vehicle to his plce after this time..this restriction also falls on a cycle and a mortor bike...
imagine the condition of a person who comes to his home after a days work and cannot take his transport to his home...he has to park it outside the food st where it would remain all the night unless he can wake upi at 2 am in the morning when the shops are closed and the gates are opened, to take his transport ot his home..
the cloch has stuck 5...after sometime the patrons of food from all over the city would be coming to the food st... but they would have to encounter many difficulties b4 they can peacefully eat their meal...their first problem is that of approach... their is no public transport which can take one directly to the food st...in all other countires in the worls when such a fextival is held, the organixers also arrange for special transport which takes the visitors to the place from different pints at appointed hours...if someone living in model town or defence for eg wants to go to the food st... he has to change at least three wagons to get there...
if someone ventures to get to the food st.. on his own car he has to take the irsk of no parking becoz he has to park his vehicle outside the street at the road where his car can be stolen by a thief...since their is no parking street, they ave to park the vehicles on nisbet rd and lukshmi chowk..
when the activities of the food street are at its peak, the residents of gowalmandi are living in complete misery..they have to go through this rush and nuisance al evening...they cannot sleep peacefully in this noise..if someone is studying he cannot study...the sick have to bear this nuisance...in addition to the illness, they cannot even take a breath of fresh air as all the openings are blocked by chiks... if they remove the chiks, the spotlights intrude their privacy..
the rules of the openingf and clocing of the gates of the food st. are so strict that even an ambulance cannot enter to take the sick to the hospital..the residents even claim that they had difficulty to take out the funeral processions of their loved ones...
the residentd of gowlamandi oftern complain that due to the restrictions on the openings of the gates, they cannot move some heavy objects like furniture etc..the situation wsa so crucial that once a shopkeeper ws not let to take a bag of wheat into the street..
the ppl who have been afected the most of all by the changing of gawalmandi into the food streeet are the shopkeepers who do not deal in the edibles..there are may photographers, potters, kite makers, green grocers and some craftsmen in the food st whose business is affected by the rules that the organisers of the food st implement on them...if they continue in the food st after 5 p.m they have to give the charges of Rs. 2000/- which cosats them a lot. otherwise they cannot do much business..this in turn has led to many of these ppl into changing their professions...theis situation affects the quality of the products produced
FOOD STREET IN THE EARLY STAGES
AT THE START OF THIS FOOD STREET, THE RULES WERE EVEN HARSHER.. IT WS FIRST DEICDED TO ALLOW familes only into the street...theis created a big no of problems..residents of theis street could not even get to their homes starting at the evening time till 3 in the morning...according to pne of the shopkeepers, it once happened that one of the residents got out of the resdent got outof the street to get some basic necessity of life and ws not allowed to get back into the street coz her was not with his family even when he had hardly taken 15 mins...the shopkeepers had to literally fight with the gate keepers to let hime in...now what would a person do in such kind of situation..what even if his family is not in the house,,,of course he would have to wait then for them...
but this is not so in the present time...it didnt take long for the authorites to realize that this was not going to work and they had to change this rule..
FUTURE OF THE FOOD STREET
many shopkeepers were questioned to whether to continue this street or not? thier answer somewhat gave an indication that it didnt matter... since the food street had started, thier private lives have been greatly affected, with a little bit profit for those who run food shops...as nothing can replace personal comfort, they are ready to bring back their previous peaceful and comfortable way of life...
but despite their personal problems, gowalmandi food street is a major tourist attraction and it is a must visit fot ppl coming to lahore...
jidday gowlamandi nai daikhia tay fir lahore hi nahi daikia:D
IMPROVISATIONS INTO FOOD STREET
THE WIDENING OF STREET BY FINISHING THE CURBS ON BOTH THE SIDEWAYS AND CLEARING THE hinderances mark the improviastions of gowalmandi into food street.. the old metalled road was replaced by a modern pave of concrete tiles which is about 75 ft wide...nig gates made in wrought iron were placed at both ends of the street to regulate traffic flow...big spotlights were fixed on both sides of the street to emphasize the decorations in the evenings....to block the intruding lights into the privacy of people living in the upper storeys of the shops, chiks were hung in front of the balconies. the street was widened so that the shopkeepers could have seating arrangement out in the open...there was no arrangement of garbage disposal and other sanitary conditions as such and the shopkeepers had to help themselves out of these problems...the municipality arranged special dump trucks for the food street that can now take away the waste for disposal at appointed hours..the sweepers come at early hours in the morning to clean the street. for these special arrangements each shopkeeper has to pay service charges of Rs. 2000/- per month to the municipality..in addition to these facilities the organizers have taken care of entertainment for the visitors..for this purpose they have installed speakers to the lamposts which are connected to a central sound system through which light music can be heard and differtn sot of announcements can be made if the need arises... to keep law and order policemen are posted who help to avoid any unpleasantness...
Courtesy: Ayesha Bakhtawar (TOWER) for the search work!!
Site Plan: N/A
Google Image: Image
Edited by Mehdi Chohan, 27 July 2014 - 06:40 AM.