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The Fixer
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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Najam Sethi has announced that Islamabad will soon have a cricket stadium of its own, and that the PCB is all set to begin full-scale construction on the project.

“We will restart construction within six months and will try to complete the stadium quickly,” Sethi said, and added that Pakistan has a bright and secure future since joining hands with the ‘Big Three’.

Sethi was speaking an at Iftar dinner hosted by the Islamabad Cricket Association in his honour, for successfully fighting on Pakistan’s behalf with the International Cricket Council, after Pakistan was left adrift when former chairman Zaka Ashraf chose not to accept the ‘Big Three’.

The Capital Development Authority (CDA) has allotted land to the PCB free of cost. According to the plan, the stadium will accommodate 50,000 spectators.

The land falls within the National Park Area at Shakarparian.

After getting possession, the PCB began construction with a boundary wall and a small site office. However, construction was interrupted when the CDA asked for an environmental impact assessment (EIA) report on the project.

A senior PCB official said all issues, including the EIA, have been resolved.

“We have completed all legal formalities. In the six month period, the first phase of work will be completed, at least,” he said.

Talking to Dawn, Islamabad Regional President Shakil Sheikh said the PCB would complete the first phase of the project in the next six months.

“We will try to have it ready for domestic cricket, at least,” he said.

The CDA handed over 35 acres to the PCB in June 2012 for the construction of the stadium. Under the agreement, the CDA will receive 30 per cent of the income generated by the stadium.
Islamabad Cricket Stadium

The PCB chief disclosed the plan of establishing a cricket stadium in Islamabad where all basic and international facilities would be provided to the visiting cricket teams. "The stadium will be fully secured having a five star hotel and a helipad to provide foolproof security to all touring teams. Though in our previous era, we could not initiate work on this project but this time, we are looking forward to work on it on emergency basis and complete it soon in an effort to revive international cricket in Pakistan."

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ISLAMABAD - New Islamabad Cricket Stadium (50,000)

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between Capital Development Authority (CDA) and Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to construct an international standard 50,000 sitting capacity cricket stadium in the capital city. The PCB and CDA had reached an agreement in this regard and CDA had provided 35 acres piece of land unconditionally to the cricket board. PCB chairman Chaudhry Zaka Ashraf promised to construct a state of the art stadium in capital in one-year time which would be the biggest stadium in country.

]Park perversion: PCB restarts building stadium
By Danish HussainPublished: December 1, 2013

A vast forested area in Shakarparian was previously cleared to make way for Pakistan Monument Museum. PHOTO: FILE
Islamabad: Now that two months have gone by without a response from the Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB), city managers are debating whether to stop the construction of the Islamabad Cricket Stadium at Shakarparian, over the board’s failure to submit an environmental assessment of the project.
The land falls within the National Park Area at Shakarparian. Though construction activities are prohibited in the area, the CDA made an exception for the stadium. The land was allotted for free to the PCB. “The Capital Development Authority (CDA) wrote to the PCB asking it to obtain an environmental impact assessment (EIA) report of the project before carrying out further construction around two months ago,” said an official of the CDA’s Environment Wing. He added that the letter also directed PCB to immediately stop construction work as the required formalities had not been completed. “Two months have lapsed but the PCB is yet to submit an EIA report of the project,” the official said.

Following the letter, he said PCB stopped construction, which is at a primary stage, but has recently resumed it. “The decision to forcibly stop work at the site will be taken next week after taking all concerned departments on board and with the consent of the CDA chairman,” the official said. PCB Media Director Nadeem Sarwar, while talking to The Express Tribune, said the PCB was complying with CDA’s directions. “Work on the site was resumed after the PCB hired a firm to conduct the EIA,” Sarwar said.
He said the report would be submitted to CDA once it’s complete. When asked if an assessment was carried out before beginning construction work, Sarwar said so far only the boundary wall and a small site office had been constructed. The boundary wall had been completed at the earliest to secure the area from encroachments, he added. “The PCB assured CDA that major construction activity would be initiated after the completion of all the formalities, including the EIA report.”

When contacted, the CDA spokesperson said he was unaware of the current development but confirmed that the PCB had been asked to submit an EIA report of the project.
In 2008, CDA allotted 40 acres to PCB on a 33-year lease for the construction of a stadium. The project was to be completed in five years but the PCB could not execute it within the time frame which led to the cancellation of the plot.
However, in June 2012, after former president Asif Ali Zardari’s intervention, CDA handed over possession of 35 acres of the land to PCB for the construction of an international standard cricket stadium in the capital. Under the agreement signed between CDA and PCB, the civic agency would receive 30 per cent of the income generated from sports activities and lease of commercial area within the stadium. PCB’s governing board decided to name the stadium after slain premier Benazir Bhutto and it will accommodate 50,000 spectators, according to the building plan.
Published in The Express Tribune,
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