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Bottleneck: Hussain Chowk

An array of underpasses and overheads may have given Lahore a new face, some of the city roads are still wedged with bad traffic gridlocks. In an ongoing series, Shehr identifies major bottlenecks in and around town

Bottleneck: Hussain Chowk
An inevitable mess. Photo by Rahat Dar

Hussain Chowk becomes an inevitable bottleneck, all day long, as it receives heavy traffic from all its hyper busy four sides — Liberty Market road, MM Alam Rd, Mehmood Ali Kasuri Rd and the one that is coming down from the mostly congested Firdaus Market-Jinnah-Flyover intersection.

The congestion normally starts at around eight in the morning and lasts an hour before it recurs during lunch hours and, later again, in the evening.

No prizes for guessing, the multiple eateries — high-profile restaurants, cafes and ice cream parlours — and other commercial centres such as shopping malls, a park plaza and beauty salons on the adjacent roads are to blame for the mess.

What’s more, Hussain Chowk itself is surrounded by a wedding banquet on the one end, a number of dhabas and shopping outlets on the other.

More recently, the construction of a multiplex on the already-busy MM Alam Rd has only added to the traffic mess, especially around dusk and even later.

The weekends are the worst time to be around Hussain Chowk. And, to say that for most people the weekend begins as early as Friday night.

MM Alam Rd is responsible for putting unnecessary halts to an ongoing traffic because it is a narrow road. The security guards standing at the foot of the multi-floor Vogue Towers take quite a few minutes checking a vehicle entering the parking. This causes long queues leading up to the road.

According to a traffic warden, the congestion around Hussain Chowk is a regular feature. This, despite the six wardens who have been deputed at the Chowk. 

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