Fahad Square

Fahad Square is different from the other three cases as it is not a settlement consisting of houses on individual plots but a developer-built apartment complex. The complex is located in a suburban project designed by the Karachi Building Control Authority (KBCA) on 10,526 hectares. It occupies an area of 0.60 hectare and consists of 248 apartments and 56 shops. The apartments are a walk-ups of ground plus four floors and have a density of 2329 persons per hectare.

The apartment housing unit are also different from housing in the other case studies. Each has balconies, attached bathrooms and American-style kitchens. It projects a picture of a different culture and a different way of living which is developer induced. The other major difference between Fahad Square and the other case studies is that amenities and health and education institutions are available to it in a planned manner in the Karachi Development Authority developed neighbourhood.

Although settlements of small plots can grow to high densities as residents expand their houses, apartment blocks are more lucrative for developers because there is more housing for sale immediately after construction (ie. more value is added per unit of land). The research team discussed this with developers and designed two small-plot settlements whose houses could grow incrementally, based on their proposals, that would represent profitable alternatives to apartments. In remodelling Fahad Square, the apartments were replaced with terraced houses, each built on approximately 31 square metres with ground plus one and a half floors. In the process, 77 per cent of the plot area was built up. The remodelled density is 2280 persons per hectare.

More information on Fahad Square is presented in a working paper available for downloading.