Transport Planning Unit (TPU) was established in March, 2011 under the Transport Department of Government of the Punjab. The aim of TPU establishment was to develop a team of dedicated transport planning and engineering specialists capable of planning, developing, maintaining and providing sustainable solutions for effective management of transport system and infrastructure in the Province. At the time of establishment of TPU, 14 different Provincial and local government departments/agencies were performing transport planning tasks in the province, particularly in Lahore city; thus, resulting in haphazard planning. The commitment to own and carry out robust planning and policy formulation, developing strategies/ programs and implement the proposed transport infrastructure projects was lacking. The agencies primarily established to undertake traffic engineering and transport planning studies have taken different roles as contrary to their assigned functions. This undue transformation further weakened the transport planning aspect in the cities. The Transport Department being responsible for the development of strategic plans, regulation of the public transport system in the Province also possessed limited technical resources.
Undoubtedly, it was necessary to develop and strengthen the capacity of the Transport Department with enhanced technical capabilities to address urban transport issues of major cities of Punjab. The Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) was engaged and assigned the task of Lahore Urban Transport Master Plan (LUTMP) formulation; however, it was decided that to have maximum benefits from the plan and to make effective use of the JICA offer of preparing LUTMP, TPU will be established as technical wing of the Transport Department. It was decided that TPU team would work alongside the JICA consultants.