Text | Anoushe Khan
Visuals | Courtesy AKPBS,P

Meet Garee Khan 

The 52-year-old man from Aliabad, Hunza is the patriarch to a family of six. Along with his wife and three children, Mr. Khan lives in a semi-engineered stone laid house that has been under construction for the past seven years because of the family’s limited financial resources. For employment, he relies on farming and labour jobs that earn him a meager salary. To support the family, his teenaged daughter works as a housemaid in the neighbourhood. Combined the father-daughter duo earn just enough to cover basic household expenses such as food, school fees and medicine–that is primarily prescribed to treat waterborne diseases rooted in the consumption of contaminated water collected from open sources.

The Khan family’s dire situation is further exacerbated by the fact that their home had no sanitation infrastructure. They use a traditional pit latrine that is located adjacent to their partially fenced house. In addition to creating an unhygienic situation for the entire family, the female members of the Khan household have to wait until nightfall to relieve themselves. “A proper soakage pit costs approximately PKR 70,000 which I cannot not afford with the limited income I have,” said, Mr. Khan.

According to the United Nations Water-Glaas 2014 report, as the world turns its attention to the formulation of the post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) much remains to be done particularly to reduce inequalities across populations:

  • 2.5 billion people lack access to improved sanitation;
  • 1 billion people practice open defecation, nine out of ten in rural areas;
  • 748 million people lack access to improved drinking-water and it is estimated that 1.8 billion people use a source of drinking-water that is fecally contaminated;
  • Hundreds of millions of people have no access to soap and water to wash their hands, preventing a basic act that would empower them to block the spread of disease.

Text | Sana Aslam 
Visuals | Courtesy NADA

Project: Fatima Jinnah Park, Islamabad 

Nayyar Ali Dada                                 Principal Architect 

Ghazanfar Ali                                      Architect

Raza Ali Dada                                     Architect

Nadeem Aslam                                    Resident Engineer

Hyder Ibrahim                                     Project Architect

Farheen Asim                                      Site Architect

Quratulain Kazami                              Architect

Saqib Bashir                                        Architect

Anjum Masood                                    Horticulturist       

Capital Development Authority CDA Islamabad

Consultants:  Nayyar Ali Dada & Associates

Contractor: Expertise Pvt. Ltd. 

Project completion: Phase 1 in 2006 & Phase II-IV in 2010

Areas: Total Park Area 760 acres

Islamabad a young city, conceived from its origin as the power seat of Pakistan, the capital city of the country that had acquired independence in 1947. The New Capital was decided in the year 1959, had from its start an ambitious, power induced; showcase to the world a major writ behind the project brief given to the assigned urban planner. A Greek firm of architects, Konstantinos Apostolos Doxiadis designed the master plan of the city based on a grid, which was triangular in shape with its apex towards the Margalla Hills.

A city nestled between the Margalla Hills, abounded with green forestation was laid out on a grid, that did not meander through the mountains and valleys but infact made inroads into the areas that has substantially grown as a concrete densified city which caters to Government bodies, Diplomatic enclaves and ancillary facilities today.

Islamabad has an impressive natural landscape and the views of hills form a comfortable and pleasant visual all around the city. There are some small parks dotted around the city, but Fatima Jinnah Park is the only place that caters for the community on an urban scale much suited to the city. During the rapid growth of the city with a concrete-jungle like approach, this park provides much relief as it acts as the lungs of the built city.

The Islamabad Park project overall concept addresses the need aimed at relief for a city developed only through buildings. First steps included removal of buildings construction from existing site and expected program and only essential forms were retained so as to maximize on the functions opportunities presented through natural landscape environmentally responsive and relevant master plan was created to blend necessary and inanities into a seemingly natural landscape.

Dear Imran,
We had a brief talk when you called me early October. If I knew it was going to be our last conversation I would have extended it a bit longer.  You told me you were not feeling well but you did not give me a clue that it was so serious. A week or so later, I made a few attempts to call you to find out how you were doing but without luck. Perhaps you were too busy preparing for your last journey.

On October 25, I received a shocking email from Karachi saying that your prognosis was not good.  A few days later, another email carried the sad news. Understandably, Nighat, Jibran and Ken’an must have felt more pain, but your family extended far beyond your household. I want to tell you that a large circle of your friends and admirers in Pakistan and overseas are deeply hurt and miss you so much.

Your dear friend Dr. Sughra in Boston wrote these words to share her grief:
“I have been deeply saddened by Imran’s passing, and am writing to you as a fellow mourner. Imran meant a lot to most people fortunate enough to know him, including me. He has been a generous, loving, kind, encouraging, fun, and a completely loyal friend for over forty years and I miss him terribly.”

Text | Maria Aslam
Photography | Gary Otte, Janet Kimber & Maria Aslam

Building Facts
Architect: Maki and Associates, Tokyo
Architect of record: Moriyama and Teshima Architects, Toronto
Landscape architect: Vladimir Djurovic Landscape Architecture, Lebanon
Museography: Studio Adrien Gardère, Paris
The site: 6.8 hectares

Museum gross floor area: 10,500 square metres
Size of galleries: 1,800 square metres
Size of collections storage: 620 square metres
Seats in auditorium: 350

Height of auditorium roof: 19.8 metres
Period from design to completion: 2004 to 2014

On the highway, short of Don Valley Parkway, a glimpse of the new addition of a Museum in Toronto is clearly visible. Situated away from the downtown area a major district of Museums and academia, itself is a statement and with such an iconic contemporary architecture amongst nondescript entities of sky-rises; it’s the distance and the distinction from its surroundings that reinforces its massive appeal in the design conundrums. In todays sprawling cityscapes the addition of any museum is distinctly urban and urbane specially Toronto; that boasts of a number of Museums equally designed by Star architects hence The Aga Khan Museum, the very first North America’s monument to Islamic art and founded by The Aga Khan renowned world over as an architecture aficionado, who was involved in the project from concept to materialization, it is known to all that His Highness himself selected the iridescent granite cubes that adorn the façade; is set to make a statement both in architecture and culture. The Museum a white gleaming Brazilian granite masterpiece adds to its distinction from its surroundings and creates an oasis of history, learning and entertainment; an oasis that once you enter, you leave the world behind.

With the lush gardens and the five reflective pools outside its front door and its inner-sanctum, open-air courtyard—entered from inside the building and ringed by walls of glass and wooden latticework so that light from outside projects dancing shadows into the museum over the course of the day—it is clear that this is a labour of love. But that is not all; The Ismaili Centre, Toronto is situated, together with the Aga Khan Museum, within a 6.8-hectare landscaped park, a new space for the public that showcases the work of three renowned architects. Japanese architect Fumihiko Maki designed the Aga Khan Museum, while Indian architect Charles Correa designed the Ismaili Centre and architect Vladimir Djurovic of Lebanon designed the Park, which features a formal garden. The Canadian firm Moriyama & Teshima are the architects for the entire project and responsible for integrating all aspects of the project.

Copyright © 2012 ADA: Architecture Design Art.