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The public exhibition ‘Creating an Urban Oasis’ has created a resurgence of hope that ‘better Dhaka is possible’ among its despair citizen lately . Credit goes to BUET Alumni Association and its collaborative bodies IAB, IEB and BIP for such endeavor.  The exhibition presented 31 projects selected form the student competition held earlier in the month of January of this year. The student has expressed their innovative thoughts and ideas to transform the Old Airport site into a vibrant urban space within the congested city fabric of Dhaka.

The idea of this praiseworthy initiative has its foundation rooted deep into the paradoxical ground that Dhaka, being one of the densely populated cities in the world, has large parcel of land remained underused or unutilized for decades. 415 acre Tejgaon Old Airport site, located at the heart of the city, is such an example which has a potential to be transformed into a vibrant public place through innovative and visionary design and planning. This novel intention, however, took shape at the beginning of this year with the launching of Idea Competition, followed by an workshop, engaging students from cross-disciplinary fields to develop visionary design proposals for  Old Airport Site as a public space. But what actually makes the whole effort noteworthy is the recent attempt to present these ideas infront of the policymakers and other stakeholders in the format of public exhibition held on 30th Oct to 1st Nov at National Museum in the city.

The exhibition displayed projects of diverse ideas to rejuvenate the old airport area as a vibrant public place considering socio-cultural, economic and environmental value of the site. All the projects were exhibited as panel presentation of drawings and visualizations along with cardboard models. Students from architecture, planning and engineering all around the country were participated in the competition which also made the event an inclusive one. A team from BUET : Sadia Humayra  Mounata (Arch), Bin Sayeed Bakhti (Arch), Ahmed Yousuf Ibn Kabir Khan (Arch), Suvodip Singha (URP), Shamima Nasrin (CE) has won the first place in the competition.

The project is an imaginative conceptualization and integration of natural, environmental, cultural, social, and historical identities of Bangladesh in the urban context. The aesthetic use of greenery, water and relaxed human activities is particularly noteworthy. The project is particularly implementable and sustainable at reasonable cost” -quoted from the Jury citation of the winning entry.

[click HERE to view the winning project ]

Honorable Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury, also chairperson of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Executive Committee, graced the inaugural occasion as a chief guest. BUET Alumni Association President Prof Jamilur Reza Choudhury delivered the welcome speech, while Dhaka North City Corporation Mayor Annisul Huq , Dhaka South City Corporation Mayor Mohammad Sayeed Khokan, IAB president Prof. Abu Sayeed , BIP president Prof. Golam Rahman also spoke on the occasion.

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