ArchitectureLife

Killing me softly Kharadar

Issue | 46
Text & Visual | Khadija Raza Baig

Kharadar and Mithadar are part of the original core of Karachi known as the ‘Old Quarters’ dating back to the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Kharadar (brackish gate) and Mithadar (sweet gate) were settlements named after the two gates of Karachi. Both enjoy a strategic location location between important roads, business centers and beautiful landmarks. Kharadar is encircled by Mithadar, M.A. Jinnah Road, (this artery connects it to the Quaid’s Mazar and Amil Colony on the opposite end) Bolton Market, Lea Market, Lyari, KPT Building, Customs House, Jaffer Fadoo Hospital and Dispensary, Katrak Mansion, Machi Market and the Ismaili Jamat Khana. Mereweather Tower stands guard on the south east entrance and guides you to I.I. Chundrigar and the Stock Exchange Building. Kharadar can be accessed through many roads like Bagh-e-Zehra Street, Paria Street, Rampart Row to name a few; the narrow lanes inside are host to some busy markets like Bombay Bazar and Kaghzi Bazar.

The area’s dynamics made it one of the most sought after areas for housing and business. People of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries would have expected it to age like fine wine. Instead, it went through putrefaction and is now considered to be one of the most notorious localities in the city.

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