The antique name 'Takshasila' means the city of cut stones. Taxila has gained worldwide eminence for its archaeological sites. Once a province of the powerful Achaemenian empire, Taxila was conquered by Alexander in 327 BC. It later came under the Mauryan dynasty and attained a remarkably mature level of development under the great Ashoka. Then appeared the Indo-Greek descendants of Alexander's warriors and finally came the most creative period of Gandhara. The great Kushan dynasty was established some where near 50 AD. During the next 200 years Taxila became a renowned centre of learning, philosophy, art and religion, Jaulian being a centre of excellence or a university of that age. Pilgrims and travelers were attracted to it from as far away as China and Greece.
History took a new turn around 1950 when Ordnance Factories were founded at Wah, adjacent to Taxila. The country's largest Mechanical Complex and Foundry were established at Taxila in mid sixties. In early seventies, the industrial progress attained a new dimension when Taxila was chosen to have Heavy Industries Taxila near its world famous museum. At the same time Pakistan's largest Aeronautical Complex was established at Kamra which is about 45 km from Taxila. In mid seventies, government of the Punjab found the city ideally suitable for establishing the constituent college of University of Engineering and Technology, Lahore.
Industrial progress in and around Taxila is gaining a newer pace. The neighboring industrial organizations are in the process of rapid expansion. A new industrial zone has emerged in Hattar area, which is about 20 km away from Taxila. Taxila is emerging as a leading industrial region at the national level. The strategic location is paving way for the city to act as a gateway to historical “Silk Route”.
With phenomenal increase in students' enrollment in 1970's, a plan to establish additional campuses of the University of Engineering and Technology Lahore was conceived. As a result of that, the University College of Engineering Taxila was established in 1975. For three years it functioned at Sahiwal. In 1978 it was shifted to its permanent location at Taxila. The College continued its working under the administrative control of the University of Engineering and Technology, Lahore till October 1993. During this month it received its charter as an independent university under the University of Engineering and Technology Taxila Ordinance 1993. At present total enrollment of undergraduate and postgraduate students is above 2000.
The University campus is located on the outskirts of Taxila at a distance of 5 km from the city. It is situated near railway station Mohra Shah Wali Shah on Taxila-Havelian branch line. The city of Taxila is 35 km from the twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi on the main Rawalpindi- Peshawar highway. The University buses commute daily between the campus and the cities of Islamabad, Rawalpindi and Wah Cantt. The campus covers an area of 163 acres. All the teaching departments, residential colony for teachers/ employees, student hostels, guesthouse, post office and bank are housed on campus.