The Capital Development Authority (CDA) has come under scrutiny as the F-9 Citizen Club, now rebranded as the Gandhara Heritage Culture and Convention Centre, remains non-functional despite significant funds spent. The construction, initiated in 2008, faced a setback in 2010 when the Supreme Court ruled against its use as a club. Despite the completion of remaining work in 2018-19, the facility still awaits functionality, comprising amenities such as restaurants, an indoor pool, a gym, lobby, aerobic area, and fitness center within its expansive 22-acre compound.
G-10 Ladies Club Abandoned for Over a Decade
In a parallel saga, the G-10 Ladies Club, whose construction commenced in 2007, witnessed abandonment in 2010 after structural and civil work concluded. The grey structure of the building has since remained untouched, with no efforts made towards completion or functionality.
CDA’s Recent Initiatives and Promises Regarding F-9 Citizen Club
Recent developments include a letter from the CDA to the Interior Ministry, seeking approval for a management committee for the citizen club. An official assured that steps are being taken to operationalize both clubs, with the F-9 club taking precedence. The finishing work on the G-10 Ladies Club’s approximately 100,000 square feet covered area requires a considerable investment.
In March of this year, the CDA board announced plans to open membership for the F-9 Citizen Club, intending to auction the first 99 memberships. However, progress has been stagnant since the decision. Similarly, the transformation of the G-10 Ladies Club into Islamabad Gymkhana was planned, but no steps were taken post the board meeting.
CDA’s Administrative Appointments and Cultural Center Rules
The CDA board appointed a member as the administrator of the Gandhara Club/Citizen Club, forming a committee to address issues at Islamabad Gymkhana. In October 2021, rules were approved for the Gandhara Centre, deciding on a board of governors for management. The Convention Centre is expected to host conventions and exhibitions, featuring a museum depicting Gandhara culture.
Despite these administrative moves, the public awaits tangible progress in the operationalization of these long-delayed public facilities, raising questions about the efficiency and accountability of the Capital Development Authority.