“Urban growth in Dhaka has been determined by the natural determinants since the Mughal period, and the city expansion during the Mughal period has also influenced the urban fabric of modern Dhaka. Mughals faced the problem of low land and climate hence developed along the Buriganga, whereas the natural determinants nowadays have shifted to the problem of flooding and changes in its physical landform. The increase in flooding is a reaction to the unplanned and spontaneous development due to rapid urbanization. Improper planning and urbanization are immediate issues that Dhaka has to solve.”

– Rachel Au Yeung, “Dhaka / Influence of Old Dhaka City to Modern Dhaka,” 2014


Dhaka / Influence of Old Dhaka city to Modern Dhaka

Rachel T. Au-yeung

The old Dhaka city now remains as the historic core and commercial nerve of Dhaka. Due to the urbanization of Dhaka transforming into a megacity, population density pressurized urban planning and urban sprawl increased. It had gradually become congested because of unplanned growth. Since 1947, most parts of the area have been losing residential quality ...

Dhaka / Buriganga river

Rachel T. Au-yeung

The Buriganga River is an important aspect to the Dhaka where it was its main water supply and a key to its economic and social development. As commercial trade is the source of flourishment of Dhaka, the commercial core has always been situated near the riverbanks. Over the years, the Buriganga has suffered from pollution ...

Dhaka (1608-1757) / Bara Katra

Rachel T. Au-yeung

Mughal nobilities built mosques, katras, palaces and forts in establishing their power in Dhaka. Living along the Buriganga river was especially the most prized residential area. The nobles maintained garden houses within the heavily populated part of the city but segregated themselves from the lower class. These spacious houses built within large gardens were primarily ...

Dhaka (1608-1757) / Urban fabric of Mughal Period

Rachel T. Au-yeung

The modern urban fabric was influenced by the street network from Mughal Dhaka. The layout of the city was in clusters of areas and the street network was irregular and intricate. The unsystematic pattern of roads from Old Dhaka (within the Lalbagh and Kotwali areas) is visible in the modern maps with the webbed and ...

Dhaka (1608-1757) / Expansion of Dhaka

Rachel T. Au-yeung

The expansion of the urban fabric of Dhaka had been dominated by the physical configuration its topography, particularly the surrounding water bodies and its mainly flat landform. Early settlements grew along the Buriganga river, and it was during the Mughal reign from 1608AD that the trading town was transformed into the capital city of Bengal. ...

Dhaka/ Influence of British Rule in the Modernization of Dhaka – Buckland Flood Protection Embankment

Vivian W.L. Lee

Buckland Flood Protection Embankment, was the first attempt of the British in dealing with the flood that threated Dhaka since the development of the city.  It was the decade when the British Crown first took control of Dhaka, proposer of the embankment, Charles Thomas Buckland, was appointed the commissioner of Dhaka during 1864-1869.  Nowadays, the area ...

Dhaka/ Influence of British Rule in the Modernization of Dhaka – New Town Planning

Vivian W.L. Lee

This article will focus on the influence of the British Rule in the planning of city-scape.  In 1885, when Frederick Wyer, the Collector of Dhaka, suggested the idea of developing the jungle-beset area with “board roads and proper drains”, Wari, as the only locality developed as a fully planned residential area where the upper-middle class ...


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