- Islamabad being one of the strategically planned cities with breath taking sites enjoys the status of second best city in the world. If you view the mega picture of twin cities of Rawalpindi- Islamabad (Please refer to Map-1) you will notice that:
- Let’s start with the Margalla Mountain Range, Margalla is a hill range that’s part of the lesser Himalayas located north of Islamabad, Pakistan. The Margalla Hills are situated at North and northeast side of Islamabad, high features of Murree and Abbottabad overlooking Islamabad are almostsaturated with multiple housing projectsto an extent that some projects are now extending to adjacent District Haripur in KP.
- Now coming towards the South of twin-cities, at its south western and westerly direction lays a vast tract of land which is located in between M2 Motorway and GT road which starts from Rawat and ends at Tarnol/ Wah. This area is highly significant in socio-economic context due to the abundant road network and its close proximity to supporting infrastructure for CPEC. Its location and linkage with CPEC (the Road to Future of Asia) has tremendous potential for growth. Let’s call it SZ (Southern Zone)
- The South Zone will be the hub of economic activities in near future. A thorough analysis on SZ reveals that this zone will result in attracting investments with handsome returns because of the following major developments;
- The approval of RBP (Rawalpindi bypass) commencing from Rawat, which connects the strategically planned DHAI Phase 3 and Phase 4, Bahria Phase 8.
- The RBP links the DHAI and Bahria with the New Islamabad Airport which will be the center of international trade plus M2 Motorway.
- Furthermore, SZ has the potential of expansion across the motorway which can further accommodate mega projects.
- In addition to this a well planned construction of Rawalpindi Industrial Zone stretched over 125000 kanals of land along Rawat Chak Beli Khan Road is highly substantial as it links the motorway.
- After analyzing the above developments in twin-cities it can be safely concluded that the SZ will be theCentre of Gravity of major national and international economic activitiesin near future.In fact, it has already exerted a population and economic pull which now is the center of attraction for developers and international investors.
- Very interestingly, over 100 large size housing projects have already been initiated in the SZ. Most of them are already approved by various Government agencies; however, many are still in the process of approval. The most high quality housing projects include DHAI, Bahria Phase 8, CDA Sectors, Mumtaz City and Top City etc. However, two competitive rivals DHAI and Bahria are still at the top as both are providing the luxurious living standard and good services to their clients/residents. Within these two rival partners, DHAI is considered most credible developer in Rawalpindi and Islamabad.
- Since its inception however, DHA Islamabad has been facing various allegations like delay in development of various phases such as DHAI Valley and DHA 2 extension etc. Having taken enough bashing by its clients, DHAI has now realigned its path to address these issues once for all. The organization has chalked out a comprehensive strategy to speed up all those projects which were running in delays. Presently, a prompt work is going on in DHA Phase 3, Phase 4, Phase 5 (Ex Commoner’s Town) and DHA 2 extension/DHAI Phase 6. In addition, a number of other up gradation projects are being implemented in already developed sectors in Phase I and 2.
- Due to ongoing rapid development activities I believe a new Serene Islamabad 2 is coming up in the shape of DHAI and Bahria Phase 8 combined……..(Please refer to Map-2)
- DHAI Phase 1
(1) A quick work is seen on Phase 1 bypass linking DHA Phase 4 directly with GT Road. This main entry will connect Askari 14 and Adiala road as well as Bahria Phase 8 which is already linked with DHA Phase 3. All these areas will be further connected with upcoming Rawalpindi bypass and onwards to M2 and Islamabad airport. Bahria has already started purchasing additional land to expand Phase 8.
(2) Much needed commercial units are coming up in Sector A and soon a number of commercials are being launched at the entrance of Phase 1 adjacent to Sector B 1. One sector commercial is already completed in Sector E.
(3) Missing aesthetics are being addressed at priority and an impressive Green DHA is seen with additional parks, plantation and parking.
(4) Defence Villas Phase 2 are being launched during this year.
(5) This Phase has exhausted investment opportunities in residential plots but in case of commercial it still has plenty of potential.
- DHAI Phase 2
(1) Askari 15 has been launched in DHA 2.
(2) World Trade Center is almost completed attracting a sizeable commercial activity.
(3) A number of attractive recreational projects have been completed in state of the art Jacranda Family Club which has added to the family life of residents.
(4) DHAI has also initiated its own education system starting from DHAI 2 and is being extended to other sectors.
(5) Aesthetics are being improved at par with Phase 1. A massive plantation drive is currently ongoing in all sectors.
(6) The world class McDonald is already inaugurated.
(7) The most impressive part of Phase 2 is up gradation of GT road to 8 lanes and a beautifully designed fly over connecting Phase 2 with Phase 5 over signal free Islamabad Express Way is in in final stages.
(8) In next two years this phase still holds 10 to 20 % space in profit in residential units but about 20 to 25% in commercial units.
- DHAI Phase 3
(1) A rather delayed project of Phase 3 has now picked up great momentum. This phase is going to be flag ship project of DHAI in terms of its size, its location and its connection with RBP (Rawalpindi bypass). Its main entry is opposite World Trade Centre on GT road and it is being extended to RBP.
(2) Zone 5 to 9 of Bahria Garden City has already become part of this phase. Renaming Garden City is renamed as Bahria Oriental Garden.
(3) A rapid earth work is ongoing which indicates a desire of DHAI to complete initial sectors in about 18 to 24 months.
(4) Phase 3 has bigger space in terms of return up to 50 to 55% in next 3 to 4 years.
- DHAI Phase 4
(1) Located on the bank of River Soan on high features opposite Bahria Intellectual Village with great scenic view has made this Phase attractive for those who desire to construct their homes in relative quiet, higher and beautiful location.
(2) It was previously known as DHAI Phase 1 Extension but now renamed as DHAI Phase 4.
(2) Askari 14 and Garden Villas Housing Society located on Adiala Road have already been merged in Phase 4. This connection has provided an entry/exit to this phase to Motorway through Adiala Road.
(3) It will be linked with Bahria Phase 8 and onwards to DHAI Phase 3.
(4) Although this Phase is developed up to 50% so far but due to its scenic location it still hold space for return up to 30 to 40 % in next 2 to 3 years.
- DHAI Phase 5
(1) Previously A to J sectors of Phase 2 was covering an area between GT Road and remaining sectors were in North of Islamabad Expressway. Now Phase 2 is limited to sectors A to J only and sectors K to Q have been renamed as DHAI Phase 5.
(2) A flyover over signal free eight lanes Islamabad Expressway has made it attractive for those whose activities are biased towards Islamabad.
(3) Except some portion of Sector G (previously Sector P) possession of plots is being given.
(4) It is being further linked with DHAI 2 Extension/ Phase 6.
(5) A beautifully designed Central Commercial on the lines of Blue Area Islamabad is likely to be launched during this year.
(6) Almost all sectors of this phase are matured except G and Riverview. In both these sectors probability of return is 20 to 30 % in next two years
- DHAI Phase 2 Extension (Likely to be renamed as Phase 6)
(1) After considerable delay good pace of development work on initial four sectors (A to D) has started.
(2) It is to be linked through Phase 5 with Islamabad Expressway and Road KahutaIslamabad as well as with DHAI Valley with a bridge with Bluebell.
(3) Future residents of this phase and DHAI valley will be lucky to reside in the surroundings of Dadocha Dam. Space required for construction of Dam has been identified and feasibility report is under preparation by Govt of Punjab.
(4) This Phase has a cushion of almost 50 % of return but during next 4 to 5 years.Those who are frustrated and holding on their plots must continue to hold.
- DHAI Valley
(1) Of all the projects of Valley has been most controversial project of DHAI. It almost became a stigma for DHAI.
(2) Land acquisition issues, delay in feasibility report by Government of Punjab for Dadocha Dam, its linking with DHAI Expressway, issues between DHAI and Bahria are main reasons for delay of this project.
(3) Almost 650 DHA Homes are ready and being handed over shortly.
(4) Work on many sectors is going on but pace is not impressive.
(5) Due to distant location of valley the expected rise in return is 15 to 30 % in next two to three years. However, holders of plots must not throw away their properties in frustration as having sold these low cost properties they don’t have any other option in any other place with this size of amount.
- Pivotal Location of Bahria Phase 7, Phase 8 and Garden City
(1) By any standard Bahria Phase 7, Phase 8 and Garden City are part of upcoming DHAI City. All these sectors of Bahria are almost developed over 90%.
(2) This phase of Bahria though is temporarily slow in investments but due to its pivotal location in between DHAI Phase 1, Phase 4 and Phase 3 it will rise at par with other sectors of DHAI.
(3) A sizeable portion of additional land is also being acquired by Bahria on either side of RBP to maintain and keep its importance,
(4) Bahria is now ideal place for construction of homes/ residential/ commercial units as its prices are at the lowest. However, Bahria is expected to gain soon at par with DHAI.
- The Final Word is that DHAI combined with Bahria phases 7 and 8 with their rapid development of projects has challenged the quality of living in expensive sectors and prices in Islamabad. In times to come, DHAI combined with Bahria should occupy an important place with their high quality infrastructure as well as secure gated community in Islamabad. Nonetheless the investors must not expect overnight return in properties as rise in return will accelerate with other upcoming projects by CPEC ………
As growth will take place with increase in need of housing.