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April 17, 2018

Misuse of Land Use Rules: LDA to withdraw relaxation to professionals


April 17, 2018

LAHORE: Lahore Development Authority (LDA) has proposed omitting relaxation of using 25 percent area of residential properties for commercial purposes under Land Use rules of Lahore Development Authority (LDA).

The decision was taken following several public complaints regarding misuse of the relaxation of using 25 percent area of residential properties by professionals i.e. doctors, engineers, lawyers, architects, accountants and etc.

Under Land Use Rules 2014, LDA had allowed hundreds of professionals to use 25 percent area of their residential buildings for business activities but unfortunately there are complaints that instead of using 25 percent area many professionals have turned their entire residential properties into commercial buildings.

As per Section 4(b) of Land Use Rules 2014, the permissible uses (Subject to payment of fee) included daycare centre or preschool, dispensary (not less than 1 kanal) and hospital (not less than 6 kanal), library, guesthouse but not including hostels, small size corner shop at the ground floor, college, university and research institute (not less than 4 kanal), government office and club.

The rule under Sec 4(b)VII, office of a professional not exceeding 25 percent of the floor area as office associated with resident’s profession with adequate parking space but this facility shall be available to a resident holding both either a professional degree, diploma or a certificate and has a valid registration with regulatory authority concerned under any law.

A senior official of LDA’s Town Planning wing said the rules maintained that the authority shall ensure that the land use provisions under permitted, permissible and prohibited uses are strictly followed in each land use class.

He said all cases under Section 4(b)VII are being referred to a scrutiny committee, which may grant permission for permissible uses listed under each land use class subject to the special rules, regulations, restrictions, payment of fee where applicable under these rules and the relevant policy.

He said the authority shall not allow a person to use a property in any land use class for a purpose which is neither permitted nor permissible while no person shall be authorised to use land or construct a building except in accordance with the land use approved for that particular land.

Scrutiny committee comprised of Secretary Housing Urban Development and Public Health Engineering Department (Chairman), Commissioner Lahore Division (Member), LDA DG (member), Wasa MD (member), TEPA MD (member), CMP, LDA (member) and CTP LDA (secretary), Ali Nusrat, Deputy Director Commercialisation said.

Following several complaints, the authority has imposed a ban on giving any relaxation to the professionals under this rule while a proposal of omitting Sec 4(b)VII from the Land Use Rules 2014 was also sent to the Punjab government. Director Commercialisation Ali Nusrat while talking with the scribe said that the amendment was proposed because of increased complaints of general public regarding misuse of this rule. He said many professionals have turned their 100 percent properties into commercial buildings through this rule.

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