Purbachal on the outskirts of the capital Dhaka is the biggest planned township in Bangladesh, with a symbolic international exhibition center under construction.
The 6,150-acre town in the northeastern suburbs of Dhaka is developed as the first smart city in Bangladesh. It will be linked with eight-lane express ways from Dhaka’s principal Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport road. The distance is only 6.8 km.
The Bangladeshi government has been developing the area as self-contained township with all modern facilities and opportunities. One of the mega infrastructures under construction in this town is an exhibition center. The international exhibition center will be ready as a venue for trade fair in Bangladesh in 2020.
The Bangladesh-China Friendship Exhibition Center” is being built by Chinese firms at a cost of about 13 billion taka (154.94 million U.S. dollars). Of the amount, China will provide 6.25 billion taka (74.49 million dollars) in grant while the rest will come from the Bangladeshi government.
The Beijing Institute of Architectural Design has formulated an eye-catching design for the center which will have about 800 booths of 9 square meters each in two big hall rooms. There will also be a conference room, press center, meeting room and business information center, as well as parking space for 1,500 cars.
The on-site management team is jointly supervised by Beijing Institute of Architectural Design (BIAD) and Shenyang Engineering Supervision & Consultation Corporation (SESCC) on behalf of the Chinese government to ensure the construction schedule and quality. The general contractor is China State Construction Engineering Corporation (CSCEC).
At present, the main structure of the project has been checked and confirmed as qualified in January 2019, and the quality ranking is “excellent.” The current construction stage includes decoration and relevant professional construction. Project director of CSCEC Chen Long said that the project would be completed by Nov. 30, 2019.
The newly-appointed Bangladeshi Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi said recently that businesses can showcase their products all the year round once the exhibition center is set up.
He said Bangladesh’s month-long Dhaka International Trade Fair (DITF) which is held in January every year with participation of local and foreign companies now at Dhaka’s Agargaon area will be relocated to this new center.
The construction of the center has already been a major boost for local community. Local vendor Sujon said the center has already been a big boon for him and people of the Purbachal area.
“My house is located at sector 5 (of this new Purbachal town). This center has boosted sales in my shop as many people are now visiting this site,” while in the past the business was dull, he said.
Apart from visitors, Sujon said those who work at this center also come to his shop. “Many people have come to see this new center, creating opportunity for me to sell more. All the people of this area are extremely happy,” he added.
Ashish Kumar is a local worker who has been working for the center for a while. He said this exhibition center project came as a big bless for local residents as it created job opportunities and boosted sales for local shops.
“People around the project are doing business well. Therefore, they are very happy about this friendship project,” he said.
Welding master Sanowar Hossain said he has gathered experience working with his Chinese colleagues.
“I have learned the Chinese language. Working with (Chinese) experts here, I had ample opportunities to learn flawless work. Now I am more aware of the safety at work.”
Plumber Amjad Hossain Amit also shared his pleasant experience working with his Chinese colleagues. Prior to the project, he worked in a Chinese company in Saudi Arabia and also worked at Bangladesh’s largest Padma bridge construction.
“We are all happy working here. We are working as a family all together,” he said.