Promise and Reality: A Comparative Study of Housing Societies in Islamabad
Author: Shanza Sohail

A rise in urban population of Islamabad has led to growing housing demand causing many housing societies to develop over time. The comparative study examines the authenticity of promotion by looking at the gap between promise and reality in the four selected housing societies: Bahria Town, Canyon Views, Korang Town and PWD. This explanatory research seeks to explore the phenomenon of what the housing societies offer to the people and what the people get in reality. Housing societies offer a lifestyle which is contradictory to the reality they provide, with the facilities to their residents not present and/or not of good quality, thus exploiting the people, and leading to dissatisfaction among residents from a low standard of living. Content analysis was applied on the data which had been collected from developers, property dealers and residents of each housing society through semi-structured interviews, key informant and participant and non-participant observation. A total sample size of 45 was selected for interviews through convenience sampling, while simple random sampling was used to get a sample of 47 images from a constructed image sample for Bahria Town and Canyon Views. The data finds the language and imagery used by both private housing societies promising the provision of the desired lifestyle people hope to achieve. For cooperative housing societies, the language used depicts the provision of affordable good quality facilities for their residents in a good social environment. People find a master planned society offering a range of good quality community facilities appealing and this draws them towards settling in that housing society. The private housing societies provide most of what they claim to offer while the cooperative housing societies though more affordable, do not have all community facilities available and/or maintained for their residents. The expectations of residents in private housing societies are being met, leading to more satisfaction compared to that of residents living in the cooperative housing societies. Regular monitoring of housing societies is required by both CDA and the cooperative societies department so as to have all housing societies abide by the rules and have them implement these rules effectively. Supervisor:- Dr. Zulfiqar Ali

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Keywords : Community facilities, housing societies, Islamabad, marketing and promotion, residential satisfaction
Supervisor: Zulfiqar Ali Kalhoro

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