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Socio-Cultural Value of Public Open Spaces with Hamchas in Dera Ghazi Khan City, Pakistan

Journal: Mehran University Research Journal of Engineering and Technology (Vol.35, No. 2)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ; ;

Page : 181-188

Keywords : Dera Ghazi Khan; Urban Open spaces; Hamacha System; Social Interaction;

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The socio-cultural value of open spaces normally refers to the behavior of users towards their surroundings. In the city of DGK (Dera Ghazi Khan), the wooden cots (locally known as Hamachas) are placed at almost every chowk and pathway. The Hamacha culture of the city acts as means of social interaction in the neighborhood where the people discuss personal, political and social issues in a friendly environment. This paper presents the social and cultural value of urban open spaces, specifically the placement ofHamachas in the public squares of the city. For this research, around 200 interviews with locals were conducted to gauge the role of public open spaces in shaping the culture of the city. The satisfaction index reveals that a vast majority of the users are highly satisfied with these public open spaces. The paper concludes that the use ofHamachas in open spaces plays a vital role in strengthening social ties among the locals. Other than a means for social interaction, these spaces are used for multiple activities ranging from conflict resolution to crime control. The findings of this study may be useful for future planning and design of squares/chowks and other public open spaces in other places

Last modified: 2016-03-12 23:31:24