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Now, boom colonies!

You read recently that Lucknow Metropolitan limits have extended up to Deva? Yes, Lucknow has been expanding very fast. While the fringes of the city have been extending, the areas within too have experienced a boom of growth. And if we observed closely, then we may come to a conclusion that while expanding, it?s also getting divided?into the large townships within the enlarging city.

india Updated: Mar 17, 2006 00:04 IST

I want it here and now! This western consumerist attitude has blossomed every city locality into a buzzing market. Armed with an A-to-Z range, these locality markets are competing with their old counterparts.

You read recently that Lucknow Metropolitan limits have extended up to Deva?

Yes, Lucknow has been expanding very fast. While the fringes of the city have been extending, the areas within too have experienced a boom of growth. And if we observed closely, then we may come to a conclusion that while expanding, it’s also getting divided—into the large townships within the enlarging city.

It was just a decade ago that people were living in colonies like Indira Nagar or began living in Gomti Nagar or Rae Bareily road. But these areas had remained largely the residential ones, as they were the areas that fulfilled housing needs as the centre of the city had already been saturated for housing needs. But over the years, Indira Nagar, Gomti Nagar or Rae Bareily road, silently and unnoticeably evolved themselves into townships.

A few years ago, people wherever they lived in the city—had Chowk, Hazratganj and Narahi markets as their main and major shopping areas. Yes, it was just apparent that to buy a refrigerator one would head to one of the showrooms in Hazratganj, or to buy chikan garments and clothes one would go to Chowk, or during festivals buy milk products and other ‘wholesale’(read bulk) buying from Narahai.

But not anymore. “Come on, now you can buy the best laptops and computers here at my shop. And people from Krishna Nagar or Alambagh areas are buying them from here,” said the manager of a computer shop at Singarnagar Crossing.

And it’s not just a mix and match computer shop—it’s an authorised dealer of a major multinational computer brand. And the show room is bigger and better than most of the computer showrooms in Hazratganj.

Imagine, a couple of years ago Karamat Market, Nishatganj used to be just a shabby little market where all that the people of Nishatganj area used to go to buy groceries or samosas. Now, the market has many shopping complexes and car showrooms. Nishatganj too has become a township. And like Nishatganj, many areas like Indira Nagar or Gomti Nagar or Kanpur road have automobile showrooms. Talking about all the multinational appliances giant having showrooms in all these townships is superfluous.

Now, as the areas have become townships, all basic and ‘branded’ needs are fulfilled within the townships themselves. Over the years, even the small groceries shops in Bangla Bazar, Nishatganj, Mahanagar, Vikas Nagar, etc have changed their shops into small departmental stores.

Now this comment from a resident of Sharda Nagar, near Alambagh, sums up the situation: “Last time I went to Hazratganj for shopping was to buy syllabus books and notebooks for my two children. We don’t have big bookshops here in this part of the city. And of course when to survey Sahara Mall once with the family and just did some window-shopping there. And yes…on our wedding anniversary, I went to a Chinese restaurant on Ashok Marg,” said Pradeep Nautial. “I remember I used to live in this area, and for Holi my father would take us to Aminabad to buy ‘pichkaaris’ and colours. Now, I don’t go to Aminabad for such shoppings as the best of pichkaaris are available here,” he added.

It’s only the movie halls that the townships lack generally, but here too things are crumbling. Gomti Nagar got the city’s first multiplex, and not many people of Gomti Nagar to cinema halls in the heart of the city. It’s only a matter of time that these townships will get multiplexes.

First Published: Mar 17, 2006 00:04 IST