The Best Planned Localities of Pakistan: North Nazimabad, Karachi

Posted on June 28, 2008
Filed Under >Owais Mughal, Economy & Development, Travel
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Owais Mughal

Among many examples of fine town planning in Pakistan are North Nazimabad Karachi, Model Town Lahore, Federal-B-Area Karachi, Islamabad Master Plan, Wah Cantonment, Eight Bazaars of Faisalabad and many more in other cities. In today’s post we will cover North Nazimabad, Karachi.

The satellite image below shows North Nazimabad’s 20 residential blocks bound in red polygon. East of NN is Federal-B-Area where as North of NN is North Karachi and Buffer Zone.

North Nazimabad, Karachi Town Planning

Whenever the aesthetics of Civil Engineering and Town Planning Projects is considered; it is an accpetable fact that curves and gradiants are considered more natural than squares or rectangles.
Cities planned in rectangular grids, though easy to navigate, don’t have same aesthtics as brought out by circular roads and curves. If you look at North Nazimabad‘s map above you can clearly see how aesthetically the curved roads and plots have been designed within mostly rectanguar grids. Atleast to me this is the town planning of highest aesthetic order

North Nazimabad, Karachi Town Planning To further make my point on the elegance of diagonals and curved roads as compared to boring rectangular blocks, I want to present the maps of Blocks C, D and E of North Nazimabad, shown in the photo to the left. Somewhere in the course of basic town planning and Architecture, it is said that

‘Nature never uses straight line in its designs, therefore curves always appear more natural’

Note the little green oval to the bottom left of the map. This is Asghar Ali Shah Cricket Ground in Block C

Brief History of North Nazimabad

North Nazimabad, Karachi Town PlanningThe photo to the right shows North Nazimabad’s location in a larger settled area view of Karachi city.

Uptil late 1950s, Karachi’s northern most settlement used to be Nazimabad. Being the Capital of Pakistan, and as the population of the city grew, need arose to house federal employees in better planned neighborhoods. Localities of Federal-B-Area and North Nazimabad were thus planned to house Federal employees. As far as aesthetics, ameneties, and grandeur was concerned, no other locality in Pakistan could match the town planning of North Nazimabad.

The planning of North Nazimabad was done by an Italian company of Planners and Architects called Carlo Scarpa & Aldo Rossi in the late 50s. In 1958 it started as new suburban development called the KDA Scheme number 2 and later it became famous by its popular name of North Nazimabad. The locality of Nazimabad which lies south of North Nazimabad was named after Pakistan’s second Governer General, Khwaja Nazimuddin. Since KDA Scheme 2 was being developed in north of old Nazimbad, it became popular by the name of North Nazimbad or some times just North.

In 1962, the Capital was shifted from Karachi to Islamabad and the planned neighborhood of North Nazimabad became available to general public instead of originally planned employees of Federal Government only.

The Matrix:

North Nazimabad consists of 20 residential blocks identified with alphabets from A to T. The plot sizes across all North Nazimabad are divided into 6 categories viz. A, B, C, D, E and F. Plots of A category have an area of 240 square yards, B = 400 Square Yards, C=600 square yards, D=1000 square yards and F=2000 square yards . Therefore a sample house address in North Nazimabad of A36/T means House number 36 with an area of 240 square yards located in Block T.

Your Ad Here

North Nazimabad, Karachi Town PlanningThe photo to the left is satellite image of Block A of North Nazimabad.

North Nazimabad is also famous for its main mass transit arterial called the ‘Sher Shah Suri Road’ being a 440 ft wide thoroughfare. There are several 220 ft wide boulevards with rain drains dividing the two lanes.

The Eucalyptus Town:

In the period 1983-87, during the mayorship of (late)Abdus Sattar Afghani, whole North Nazimabad locality was planted with hundreds and thousands of Eucalyptus saplings. As fast as Eucalyptus grows, within few years whole Nazimabad town turned into a green paradise of tall Eucalyptus trees.

However, lately these eucalyptus trees have been mostly cut down for reason better known to the subsquent city governments. One reason that I have heard is that Eucalyptus is a water thirsty tree and so many of the eucalptuses in North Nazimabad were causing the ground water level to go down.

Also Called Taimuria

During the same era, in order to localize the neighborhood names, North Nazimabad was renamed as ‘Taimuria’ and Federal-B-Area was renamed as ‘Mansura’. With the demse of Government of that time, the new names also met their natural death and never caught a mass acceptation. Today the only remnants of the name Taimuria in North Nazimabad are the ‘Taimuria Police Station’ and a ‘Taimuria library’.


North Nazimabad, Karachi Town Planning The photo to the right is Block B of North Nazimabad .

North Nazimabad of today has lost much of its past glory. Just like many localities of big cities, businesses from city center slowly creep into residential areas and people of these area start moving further outward to suburbs. Same has happened to North Nazimabad. The once peaceful residential locality of Karachi is now fast turning into a commercial market.

On my last visit to Karachi, I was surprized to see almost 80% ‘F’ size plots of block F were converted into some private school or private University. The once small eating shops in block H and block A had collectively turned into full fledge food streets. barkaat-e-Hyderi market is now one of the largest shopping centers of the city. All multinational fast food chains have opened their branches in

The photo below shows Block F of North Nazimabad. Many of the plots in Block F were of area 2000 sq feet. They have mostly been converted to something commercial e.g. Private Schools and Universities.

North Nazimabad, Karachi Town Planning


North Nazimabad of today boasts of atleast four First-Class Cricket Grounds, several hospitals, A Medical and Dental University, Several HSC Colleges, Taimuria library, several parks and sustained commercial activity which makes it a complete city inside the city.

In 2001, North Nazimabad was declared as one of the 18 towns of Karachi. were added to North Nazimabbad proper.

Mass Transit Plans for North Nazimabad

North Nazimabad is included in the Karachi Mass Transit Plan (KMTP) of 1970s. The Orangi-Cantt Station mass transit corridor touches Block A and B of North Nazimabad.

North Nazimabad also has a Railway Station on Karachi Circular Railway Route. So whenever the KCR is fully revived on its loop, North Nazimabad will benefit.


According to 1998 Census the population of 20 blocks of North Nazimabad town was approximately 250000 where as population of North Nazimabad town which also included the localities of Buffer Zone I and II, Shadman, and Paposh Nagar was 496000

Trivia About North Nazimabad:

1. The Four First-Class Cricket grounds of North Nazimabad: Bakhtiari Youth Center A Ground (Block S), KDA Stadium (Block S), Syed Asghar Ali Shah Stadium (Block C), which also held a 3-day International between Pakistan and Zimbabwe and KCCA Stadium (Block N).

2. In 1960, North Nazimabad was connected by Karachi Circular Railway Service with its Railway Station in Block B called ‘North Nazimabad’. The station remained operation until 1999. KCR service got suspended in 1999.

3. Postal Code of North Nazimabad is 74700.


1. North Nazimabad in Transition by Sabeen Jamil
2. North Nazimabad Town Government
3. City District Government of Karachi (CDGK)
4. Google Earth for all the Satellite Maps

Ready For Your Geography Quiz?

So in the satellite image below, can you try to find out where is North Nazimabad located? Answer is given above in the first map of this post.

North Nazimabad, Karachi Town Planning

46 Comments on “The Best Planned Localities of Pakistan: North Nazimabad, Karachi”

  1. Asad Alam says:
    June 28th, 2008 2:02 am

    Nice overview, definitely North Nazimabad is one of the best planned localities in Pakistan. I have owner of being a resident of Block Q. Anyways, but just to add one thing, there is also a P-block and possibly a U-block. The P-block is the well reknowned Hussain D’Silva Town. But I don’t have authentic information about Block U.

  2. Owais Mughal says:
    June 28th, 2008 2:05 am

    Asad, as I wrote in the post there are twenty blocks A through T in alphabetical order. P is included. U is not.

  3. Naseer says:
    June 28th, 2008 3:17 am

    - Owais Sahib,
    Though I have’nt read it all, I give you 100 marks out of 99 just for the attempt, and I thought this was just a blow hot blow cold forum.
    Well done to The Team.

  4. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    June 28th, 2008 5:52 am

    @ Bohat achay, kia details hein , jo mujh jaisay
    Karachivi ko bhi maaloum nehein.
    I visited once this beautiful area. Wish could see
    Karachi with all its corners.

    Karachi, jeo hazaron saal

  5. June 28th, 2008 9:24 am

    A very well written local history. I wish this could be teach to the local students in school, it wont take more than 15 minutes to tell them about the area they are living, it generates asscoication with the place in the mind of the children. According to your numbers, it means if Karachi population is 1 karor, than around 50% lives in North Nazimabad! huge poplution lives there..

  6. June 28th, 2008 9:45 am

    thankyou Owias sahab for nice information…

  7. fawwad hussaini says:
    June 28th, 2008 11:01 am

    That was great to read , nice sharing man…
    Well, previously i thought DHA as the best planned locality but fact is some how different

  8. Owais Mughal says:
    June 28th, 2008 11:16 am

    Fawwad, DHA is definitely a posher (is this the right adverb?) locality than North Nazimabad. Land and buildings are more expensive in DHA but town planning wise I’ll give higher marks to North Nazimabad. There are more open spaces in North as well as roads and streets are wider. Every boulevard in NN has a rain-water drain built in the middle. etc

  9. Eidee Man says:
    June 28th, 2008 12:22 pm

    Nazimabad may be well-planned, but it has poor brand value in Karachi. One of my friends was house-hunting when I was in Karachi last year, and I got to get a fresh look at all sorts of areas.

    The most ridiculous examples were in DHA phase IV and Bath Island. In one street in phase IV, the ground was all dug up, the electricity poles were teetering and looking extremely dangerous, the area itself was flooded after not that much rain, you can’t get water through the normal system (i.e. have to pay for a tanker whenever you run out), etc etc. Asking price: 2 crore rupees for a 300 sq. yds. badly designed house.

  10. shahran says:
    June 28th, 2008 1:41 pm


    What a great reminder of the area where I spent my childhood and my youth. I ‘ve lived in Block A of North Nazimabad, a couple of blocks from the Youth Center, went to St.Jude’s High school which was in Block P of North Nazimabad and infact right next to the Hills.

    As far as the blocks, I guess you missed the W block which was the block next to the famous Paposhnagar. That was called Allama Iqbal town. Interestingly famous humorous and poet Ibne-Insha used to live in block W. I still recall a white marbel plaque with “Chand Nagar” written on the front pillar of the his house.

    I know at one time, there were plans to develop a tourist attraction and put chairlifts on the hills especially the ones above the Pakistan Shipowner College but I guess it never went through.

    Also the famous places of N Nazimabad are :

    Mullah Nihari in Block A at Golden gate ( well now there is big Mcdonalds is pretty close to it.

    Barkat-e-Hyderi market in Block G.

    Five Star Chowrangi , another famous outdoor BBQ place.

    Marriage halls strip on both sides of the road : in Block N and J.

    A number of famous personalities were residents of the area:

    1. Famous actor Shakeel , former resident of block B ( 70s)

    2. Mazhar Ali and M.Warsi , Shehnaz Shaikh, Zahin Tahira famous artists , were former residents of Block A. Warsi had a autoshop as well and had a nice red sports car which PTV used to show in almost every drama in those days.

    3. Ibne Insha , block W , Majnu Gorakhpuri block N

    4. Moin Khan , former Pakistani wicket keeper block N

    5. Famous film actor Saud, former resident of block D

    6. famous painter who died recently Iqbal Mehdi, resident of Block A.

  11. Owais Mughal says:
    June 28th, 2008 1:47 pm

    Shahran, some other personalities of North Nazimabad:

    PTV Producer/Actor, Qasim Jalali (Block A),
    Stage/TV Actor: Shahzad Raza (Block A),
    Cricketer Mansoor Akhtar and Manzoor Akhtar (Block H)

    I didn’t know about Block W’s existence. I Thought ‘block T’ was the last one. Thanks for the info.

  12. zia says:
    June 28th, 2008 8:44 pm

    mannn!!! i love thiss postt ….my whole childhood spend living in N.Nazimabadd Block A ….i went to school in Little Folk’s on Block F at that i time there were only few scholls…..but i’ve heard that there are many noww on the same roadd……and how can i forgett Hyderii markett…Hyderi is the heart of N.Nazimabad !!!!

  13. June 29th, 2008 3:05 am

    Wasn’t NN planned for bureaucrats and politicians when Karachi was the capital?

    speaking of famous personalities, I think they emerged more from Nazimabad Block rather North nazimabad. Ppl like Anwar maqsood, AQ Khan, Ibn-e-Saf, Dr.Shah, actor Nadeem, Zaheer Abbas, “infamous” Musharraf,Shahzad Roy, Samiullah, String’s Faisal Kapadia , Allama Talib Johri,Qureish Pur are few of many who were Nazimabadians. And last but not least, “me” as well :D. Though I live in Block H North Nazimabad now.

    p.s: Anyone from Nazimabad No.1 and 2 here?

    p.p.s: Owais, yet another great post!

  14. June 29th, 2008 3:17 am

    Famous Karhai at Pahar Ganj DeSilva town Block P

  15. June 29th, 2008 7:58 am

    Nice post !!!

    reader from D block

  16. meengla says:
    June 29th, 2008 8:36 am

    Indeed the actor Shakeel used to live in Block B. I myself am from Block B! I remember him standing near a city-bound bus stand across from the then Golden Gate restaurant waiting for either bus or rickshaw–I don’t think he owned a car then. Simpler and safer days when a prominent actor like him could have that kind of freedom.
    Ah, the Mullah Nihari. The excitement at the opening of the Golden Gate restaurant. The coming to even more life in the Hydery market during Eid. The cricket ‘tournaments’ through the nights.

  17. Poor Hungry Doc says:
    June 29th, 2008 11:36 am

    Thank you for a very informative post especially for non Karachiites like me. It sounds like a wonderful place and I plan to visit someday.

  18. Shahran Asim says:
    June 29th, 2008 10:40 pm

    @ Adnan,

    Anwar Maqsood , Sadeqain , Shakir Ali , used to live in PIB Colony used to be called a Colony of intellectuals

  19. Owais Mughal says:
    June 29th, 2008 11:09 pm

    Shahran and Adnan, Mushtaq Ahmed Yousufi also lived in PIB colony for many years. His presence their indeed made it an intellectual ‘basti’.

  20. Janeeta says:
    June 30th, 2008 12:52 am

    Great post Owais Bhai …. I myself is a resident of North Nazimabad and love the place …. its the only locality where every block has its own park/s. According to a survey ( i dont remember the source) North Nazimabad has the highest literacy rate in Karachi.

    Also the Pakistan Shipowners College situated in Block R and S along Shahra-e-Noorjahan is the biggest Boys College in Karachi.

  21. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    June 30th, 2008 5:42 am

    @ Janeeta,
    apnay muhn mian mithhoo !!

    @Pir Ilahi Buksh Colony was never & is not
    in North Nazimabad, and is very next to Karachi Central
    Jail Khana, if I am not mistaken !!!

    Nazimabadi, Saudabadi, Azizabad aur Liaqatabadi,
    yeh chaar anasir hon to banta hay Musharrafian

  22. krash says:
    June 30th, 2008 5:59 pm

    How big is North Nazimabad area wise? Is it all within walking distance?

  23. Arsalan Khan says:
    June 30th, 2008 6:52 pm

    Check out Wikipedia article on North Nazimabad at:

  24. Owais Mughal says:
    June 30th, 2008 9:19 pm

    Krash, North Nazimabad is roughly 4×6 = 24 square km

  25. kashif Mirza says:
    July 1st, 2008 12:06 am

    great post. being the resident of Block A , now i knew the beautiful historical perspective of this area planning…

  26. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    July 1st, 2008 1:38 am

    @Adnan Siddiqui,

    Huzoor, yeh Karhai kia kisi D’Silva nami Gunjay kay
    pahar par waqiya hotel ko kehtay hein ??
    Goya :

    Sar-phirey, man-challay sab Nazimabadi hogaey.

    Iska matlab hay keh ham nay kaffi miss kar dala.
    Chalo !! Sair to hogai !!!

  27. Shahran Asim says:
    July 1st, 2008 11:35 am

    Nice to see a number of Block A residents showing up here :)

    Owais, Qasim Jalali was a real bad miss for me since I spotted him a number of times on the vegetable shop. He used to have a Volkawagon.

    Famous poet late Parveen Shakir also used to live in block A before she moved to Islamabad.

    A block had a huge cricket ground which was actually State Bank space but was left open for a couple of years. The ground is gone and a large State bank zonal office sits there.

    Owais, with block F , I do recall a house called “GULAB MAHAL” which has a nice Synthetic Rose built on the front gate. I am not sure if it is still there. H block also had Polka Ice cream factory which is now being abandoned.

    Also famous actor Nadeem was also a former resident of Paposhnagar.

    Strings lead singer Faisal Kapadia also used to live in North Nazimabad . presumbly in block H. (He was four years senior to me in school )

  28. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    July 6th, 2008 6:12 pm

    @ very late 50s or early 60s Agha Hashr use to live there
    as well, if anybody remembers ?

  29. Imran says:
    September 24th, 2008 12:20 am office also in North Nazimabad

  30. Saleena says:
    December 30th, 2008 8:05 pm

    I love this town. I am lucky to be born in this town.
    Some ifo about this town that i know.

    1. Foundation Stone placed by President Ayyub Khan is located next to Sakhi Hasan Chorangi Trafic Police Choki.
    2. Governer Sindh IshratulIbad Khan lives in Block N.
    3. Actor Mohammad Ali and Zeba used to have a Film Studio in Block L. (Lalazar)
    4. Mehshar Badayoni (poet) lived in Block L
    5. Most Litrate Town of pakistan
    6. Indian Actor Ammir Khan used to visit Block N as his relatives lived there.

    More soon

  31. rizwan ul hasan khan says:
    January 22nd, 2009 12:52 am

    After passing a long long time abroad when returned to Karachi and visited the North Nazimabad was highly shocked , once called the beauty queen of Karachi was changed in to the face of a bride having small pox all over his face and body. Many internal roads were dig from patches to patches for carpeting or may be for reconstruction but never repaired, dont know why? most of the foot paths were broken and full of garbage , specially the foot path that is just infront of Dr. Ziauddin hospital and leads to B block. One of best mosque of the area Mosque AL HUDA was surrounded by all broken sewrage lines and difficult to walk to its main gate. Its toilets were so filthy that no one can imagine. I was robbed four times in a month for cash and mobile while going from ziauddin hospital to al huda mosque. Many katchi abadies established in many amenities plots. Hundreds of the big Eucalyptus trees were butchered even on the main road that faces the villa of ex -city nazim janab Naimatullah khan, Many times heard the announcement from the loudspeaker of the katchi basti adjacent to block B that a minor girl is disappeared since yesterday , if any one knew about her please inform to the mosque. Big flames rising to the sky with a huge clouds of smokes is a common feature of the kutchra kundi near block B , giving the residents very dangerous poisoneous gases free of cost. The people living there are highly qualified , well influencial , but are unable to do any thing , why ?that is the thing I think daily when I passes from there. Rizwan , a stranger in my own city.

  32. Owais Mughal says:
    April 1st, 2009 11:04 pm

    A road connecting Block T of North Nazimabad with Orangi has been built by a deep cut through the hills. This photo appears in today’s Jang

  33. Aftab Ahmad Farooqi says:
    April 2nd, 2009 12:58 am

    I am Associate Professor in the department of Civil. Enginering of NED University of Engineering and Technology, Karachi. I teach the course of STRUCTURAL ANALYSIS-II to the students of 3rd year.
    I am residing in house number B-276 of Block L of North Nazimabad from the last 35 years, its streats are wide, it water supply system is best in the city, the literacy rate of the people residing is above 90% , commercial ares are well planned & well organized. In each block of North Nazimabad space is allocated for residences, commercial centers, Mosques, parks/play grounds; system of disposal of drainage waste water, unique in Pakistan.

  34. SAN says:
    May 17th, 2009 7:40 am

    Unfortunately, most (if not all) of the grounds in the North Nazimabad have been cut down to half size and the rest half have already been allocated by our City government to their dears.

  35. July 16th, 2009 2:57 am

    This is great to hear about Graet Location North Nazimabad. Keep it up .


    Real North Nazimabad Lover


  36. asif khan says:
    November 5th, 2009 9:27 pm

    = Governor Ishrat ul Ibad (N block)
    = Moin Khan cricketer (N Block)
    = Actor Ghulam Mohiuddin also from North Nazimabad
    = Haseena Moin also from North Nazimabad
    = Aamir Khan indian actor also stayed in North Nazimabad during his visit to karachi .

  37. Owais Mughal says:
    November 16th, 2009 5:37 pm

    Following paragraph added to the post today: The planning of North Nazimabad was done by an Italian company of Planners and Architects called Carlo Scarpa & Aldo Rossi in the late 50s. In 1958 it started as new suburban development called the KDA Scheme number 2 and later it became famous by its popular name of North Nazimabad. The locality of Nazimabad which lies south of North Nazimabad was named after Pakistan’s second Governer General, Khwaja Nazimuddin. Since KDA Scheme 2 was being developed in north of old Nazimbad, it became popular by the name of North Nazimbad or some times just North.

  38. Farm Boy! says:
    November 22nd, 2009 1:03 pm

    the beauty of NorthNazimabad is marred by the encrochment on the back drop at the Hill, colonised by illegal immgrants. They all come down & wander into the locality but no one from down is allowed in thr area, they look at you with suspicion.

  39. Former A Blocker says:
    November 24th, 2009 6:19 pm

    Great article indeed. Have learned quite a bit about NN that I can easily brag about my parents’ birth place. You should add all this information to the North Nazimabad Wikipedia page.

  40. Nadeem Shaikh says:
    December 1st, 2009 2:54 am

    Well I guess there is no other opinion regarding this area except being one of the best. We have been living in Block -W- for over 40 years. It is called Allama Iqbal Town and was previously called Hussain D’silva Town.

    Dr. Adeeb a well known Urologist also lives/lived here besides many others well known personalities like Sajid Hassan TV artist, Ibn-e-Insha etc.


    Yes this is north Nazimabad

  41. Owais Mughal says:
    December 9th, 2009 10:47 am

    Is block W part of North Nazimabad proper? somehow I thought it was part of old Nazimabad or (say) Paposh-nagar that is why i didn’t include its intro in the post above. I thought ‘T’ was the last block in NN.

    I need guidance from the readers here.

  42. Nasir says:
    December 16th, 2009 7:08 am

    Yes, Block ‘W’ aka ‘Allama Iqbal Town’ is also a part of North Nazimabad, it has 2 plot size categories ‘A’ & ‘B’.

    It’s among the safest and the most secure block!

  43. Owais Mughal says:
    December 21st, 2009 6:53 am

    Yesterday I visited a new book store in Block D, North Nazimabad. It is called ‘Liberty Books’. It is located next to Hyderi Sweets in barkaat-e-Hyderi Market. I recommend a visit to this booksotre for all book lovers. Currently they are having ‘upto 50%’ inaugural sale.

  44. Muhammad Nooruddin(Noor Bhai) says:
    April 20th, 2010 2:46 am

    It is good to find details on NN. I wish to add a few. The entry into NN from Matric board office has been scarred by a huge building by Saima builders joint investor cum political venture. It seems like a carbuncle on the face of NN.The space was previously used by telephone exchange. Instead (KASH) this space be made a beautiful MetroStation(Train) cool ! centrally AirConditioned! as it is attached to the railway track.
    As someone has mentioned the grabbing of our beautiful park spaces, i think supreme court has to throw meteors to demolish unauthorized plotting+structures erected on these sceneric parks by MAFIA, otherwise how can the administration demolish the ugly monuments by politico mafiac group. Nodoubt great work also in progress on the roads from Abdullah College to Pahar Gang and its outskirts.

  45. Mirza S Baber says:
    May 16th, 2011 2:02 am

    Beauty of North Nazimabad is that every block has its own commercial area, mosque, play ground, public park and flat sites on the main roads AND in many blocks there are 20 feet wide service lanes in between 2 plots which are used for water, gas and sewerage lines and that is the reason roads infront of houses are/were safe from unnecessary destruction by KW&SB, SSGC, electricity, telephone and now cable connections are on the front side as usual.
    Most importantly almost all blocks are identical in master plan and plot numbers very systematic but one has to undestand the logic behind which is very simple, first comes category(A,B,C,D,E,& F) then plot number (123)and block aplhabet comes in last.

  46. HINA SIDDIQUI says:
    November 21st, 2011 9:35 am

    your work is really great ..

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