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In the early days of independence it was felt that a new and permanent Capital City had to be built to reflect the cultures, traditions, hopes, aspirations and dreams of all diverse ethics, linguistic and regional groups that constituted the Pakistani nation.
 

It is the purpose-built capital of Pakistan. It lies against the surroundings of the Margalla Hills at the northern end of Pothohar Plateau. The modern capital Islamabad and the ancient Gakhar city of Rawalpindi stand side by side, displaying the country’s past and present. The city was built intentionally to serve as the capital of Pakistan during 1960 by the orders of then President of Pakistan: General Ayub Khan.

 

The Idea of Islamabad:
In the early days of independence it was felt that a new and permanent Capital City had to be built to reflect the cultures, traditions, hopes, aspirations and dreams of all diverse ethics, linguistic and regional groups that consituted the Pakistani nation. It was considered prudent and in the national interest to locate the Federal Capital where it could be isolated from the onslaught of business and commercial interests and yet be easily accessible from even the remotest corner of the country. In view of the Islamic ideology of the country the Federal Capital had be located closer to the Muslim areas of Centeral Asia and in close proximity of the fraternal people of Iran, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey.
A commission was accordingly constitued in 1958 and entrusted with the task of selecting a suitable site for the National Capital with particular emphasis on location, climate, logistic, defence requirements, aesthetic, scenic and natural beauty.

After the extensive research, feasibility studies and thorough review of various sites, the commission recommended the area Northeast of Rawalpindi. After the finaldecision of Cabinet the die was cast and there was no turning point.

A Greek firm Doxiadis Associates drew up a master plan triangular in shape, based on a grid system, with its opex towards the Margalla Hills. The planners envisaged Islamabad eventully absorbing Rawalpindi entirely and stretching well to the West of Grand trunk road.

It was the technical expertise of Doxiadis and course the dedication and hardwork of Pakistani engineers, technicians and workers which had turned Islamabad into the one of the most beautiful cities of the World

It was considered prudent and in the national interest to locate the Federal Capital where it could be isolated from the onslaught of business and commercial interests and yet be easily accessible from even the remotest corner of the country. In view of the Islamic ideology of the country the Federal Capital had be located closer to the Muslim areas of Central Asia and in close proximity of the fraternal people of Iran, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

A commission was accordingly constituted in 1958 and entrusted with the task of selecting a suitable site for the National Capital with particular emphasis on location, climate, logistic, defense requirements, aesthetic, scenic and natural beauty.
Pakistan's Capital ISLAMABAD nestles against the backdrop of the Margalla Hills at the northern end of Pothowar Plateau. It offers a healthy climate, pollution free atmosphere, plenty of water and lush green area.

It is a modern and carefully planned city with wide tree-lined streets, large houses elegant public buildings and well-organized bazars/markets/shopping centers. There are rarely crowds or traffic jams and few narrow lanes or slums; the walkways are shaded & safe and separated from the traffic by rows of flame trees, jacaranda and hibiscus. Rose, Jasmine & bougainvillea fill the parks and scenic viewpoints show the city to its best advantage.

Zones:
Islamabad is divided into eight basic zones:

  • Administrative
  • Diplomatic Enclave
  • Residential Areas
  • Educational Sectors
  • Industrial Sectors
  • Commercial Areas
  • Rural Areas and Green Areas

Each sector has its own shopping area and public park. The population of the Islamabad city is around 9,50,000 people with an area of about 910 square kilometers. The Islamabad city lies at latitudes 33° 49' north and longitudes 72° 24' east with altitudes ranging from 457 to 610 meters.

Temperature:
Seasons Max-Average Min-Average
Winter (Oct-Mar) 16.6 C 3.4 C
Summer (Apr - Sept) 34.2 C 24.4 C
Annual average 28.9 C 14.4 C

The area's micro-climate is regulated by three man-made lakes (Rawal, Simli and Khanpur). The city has hot summers with monsoon rains occurring during July and August. Even on the few winter days when pre-dawn temperatures fall below freezing, the afternoons are usually sunny and mild: in the coldest month, January, the average daily maximum temperature is 16°C (61°F).
It offers a healthy climate, pollution free atmosphere, plenty of water and lush green area. It is a modern and carefully planned city with wide tree-lined streets, large houses elegant public buildings and well-organised bazars/markets/shopping centres.

The average humidity level of Islamabad 55% with an average rainfall of 1150 millimeters each year. The city is quite moderate in case of its wether. The maximum average temperature is 29C and goes down to average minimum of around 14C.

Main Markets:
  • Chinatown
  • Jinnah Super Market
  • Abpara
  • Karachi Company/G-9 Markaz
  • Super Market
  • Sitara Market
  • Blue Area
  • Peshawar Moore
  • G-10 Markaz
  • G-11 Markaz
  • F-10 Markaz
  • F-11 Markaz
  • G-8 Markaz - mainly second hand automobiles market
  • I-8 Markaz
  • I-9 Markaz
  • I-10 Markaz
  • I-11 Markaz
Hotels:
  • Marriott Hotel
  • Holiday Inn Hotel
  • Serena Hotel
  • Pearl Continental Hotel
  • Centaurus Hotel (Underconstruction)
  • Grand Hyatt(2009)
  • Intercontinental(2009)
  • Le Meridian(2009)
  • Best Western Hotel
  • Avari Hotels Islamabad(2008)

Sectors:
Islamabad is divided into several different sectors, each identified by a letter of the English alphabet and a number, with each sector covering an area of approximately 2km x 2km. Each sector is further divided into 4 sub-sectors. The sectors currently in use are lettered from D to I.

Currently, there is only one D sector, D-12 Islamabad. Although this sector is underdeveloped with its development to be completed in 2008, it will be considered as one of the most beautiful sectors of Islamabad because of its location near the Margalla Hills.

The E sectors are numbered from E-6 to E-12. Many foreigners and diplomatic personnel are housed in this sector.

The F sectors are numbered F-5 through F-12. F-5 is an important sector for the software industry in Islamabad, as both of the two software technology parks are located here. The entire sector of F-9 is dedicated for the Fatima Jinnah Park. The Centaurus complex (including a 7 star plaza, 5 star hotel and apartments) will be one of the major landmarks of F-8.

The G sectors are numbered G-5 through G-12. Some important landmarks include the Convention Center, SS-CARE and Serena Hotel in G-5, the Lal Mosque in G-6, the Karachi Company shopping center in G-9 (named after a construction company from Karachi who made one of the first flats in this area in and around 1978) and the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences hospital in G-8.

The H sectors in Islamabad are numbered H-7 through H-12. The H sectors in Islamabad are mostly dedicated to educational and health institutions. Shifa International Hospitals Ltd. and the Shifa College of Medicine are situated in sector H-8/4. Sectors H-8, H-9, H-10 and H-11 contain the campuses of a number of top universities and Institutes of the country, including Institute of Cost & Management Accountants of Pakistan, COMSATS Institute of Information Technology, Allama Iqbal Open University, City School, and Beacon House School in sector H-8 of Islamabad; the National University of Modern Languages (NUML) and International School of Islamabad in sector H-9; the International Islamic University in sector H-10 Islamabad; the National University of Computer and Emerging Sciences (FAST-NUCES) in sector H-10 Islamabad; and the National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST) in H-12 Islamabad.

The I sectors are numbered I-8 Islamabad through I-10 Islamabad. Except for I-8 Islamabad, these sectors are primarily set aside as part of the industrial zone. For now, most of the I-sector Islamabad is open land with dense vegetation, including several annual and perennial plants. The trees are dominated by willows, oaks and eucalyptus trees.

Islamabad today is the heart and soul of Pakistan, a city which symbolizes the aspirations of a young and dynamic nation that looks forward to a glorious future for its people, a city which welcomes modern ideas but at the same time recognizes and cherishes its traditional values and its past history.

 
     
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