Rethinking Dhaka city corporation markets: regaining the publicness
AuthorKhalil, Ayesha Labiba
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Unplanned urban growth is common phenomenon in Dhaka city however. In the process of urbanization the city is loosing its character of the city, it is loosing the resources as well as many landmarks. A look back into the past shows how Dhaka City emerged as the city of trade and commerce. Its initial identity as the city of mosques and bazaars is now almost lost due to this unplanned growth of the city. The essence of bazaars can still be felt in the older parts of the city but seems to be absent almost completely from the new city. The city is now undergoing a second stage of development where public markets and retail spaces that were constructed as per the master plan of the city are undergoing a redevelopment. Dhaka city has now undergone a transformation from the city to bazaars to modern malls. In Dhaka city, the urban shopping scenario seems to be more chaotic and does not usually follow previously planned market arrangements. (Hossain, 2014) Dhaka City Corporation markets where constructed to offer a platform for services and amenities to be provided to the occupants of the residential area surrounding it. With the recent trends in development these markets are changing in terms of usage, types of retails, tenants as well as built form are being witnessed. Gulshan 2 DNCC market is an example of such a planned yet chaotic market and is now being proposed to undergo a redevelopment with the changing patterns of customers’ needs and lifestyle. The market currently comprises of a “pucca” shopping center and a “kacha:” bazaar accommodating perishable items such as meat, fish and vegetable. Gulshan in one of the major residential areas of the city mainly accommodating upper middle class, upper class population as well as expats, diplomats and many embassies. Thus the requirement for this location varies from that of other areas. The focus of this project is propose a design and policies with which the essence of a public market can be kept in DCC markets and most importantly create a balance between commerce and community in publically owned retail markets. The proposed design will provide the area with an entertainment and retail services for the local people as well as the foreign consumers in the area. The cultural context of the city is an important aspect that is highlighted in order to represent the retail and entertainment culture of the city to the users. The services will be set kept in mind the requirement of the area as well as the commercial value of the land thus creating an economically feasible yet provide a new sort of public gathering space which the city lacks.