This will be enabled by a proper city address system implemented as a pilot project by the Thimphu Thromde (TCC) and Bhutan Postal Corporation Limited (BPCL) to facilitate fast access to all kinds of urban services.
The new address system will help in business and trade activities, and door-to-door delivery system. People will get water, electricity and telephone bills delivered at their homes.
“Bhutan is the only country without a proper city address system,” said an official from the Urban Planning Division under Thimphu Thromde, “therefore, the public requested that a proper address system be put in place.”
The core area in Thimphu has already been provided building numbers starting from 4 April. Further, streets will be renamed and unidentified streets too will be named.
However, before carrying out these activities, TCC will put up a proposal to the government, most probably in the month of May.
“All the roads will be renamed after consulting local people and keeping the historical background of Thimphu in mind,” said a TCC official adding that currently, the streets in the capital have been named without any basis.
According to the manager of Operation and International Affairs, BPCL, the post code introduced by the office in Feb 2010, could not serve its purpose without a proper city address system.
“Like in rural areas, we have house numbers but people are not using them,” said the manager.
At the moment, BPCL has post boxes, institutional address, and local urgent messengers for delivery and collection of mails or for any postal purposes.
But “many a times there is problem in delivering the mails or parcels,” he said.
People, most of the time write the name of the recipient and dzongkhag which makes prompt delivery difficult.
Post office workers then call up the recipient if the mobile numbers are mentioned or else people drop by the office to collect their mails.
Considering such inconveniences, the government instructed Thimphu Thromde and Bhutan Post to come up with a proper address system for the city.
Statistics show that the capital city is growing at a rate of 12.5% a year. Rapid peripheral growth of new settlements is an issue for concern which highlights the need of the city for an address system.
The TCC official stated that without an identification system, people would face problems in giving or following directions.
“Without the proper address of an area, how can we direct ambulances, fire or security services? How can a courier or message be sent to a recipient?” he asked.
This system can also be beneficial in identifying urban facilities and equipment so that water facility, electricity or telephone network breakdowns could be tracked down easily.
With the new address system, tax collection service can function effectively, too.
TCC has plans of replicating the service in other thromdes and yenlag thromdes if plans go well.
In 2011, enumerators collected data to see how many buildings, number of households and types of building there were so that the address system can be formulated systematically.
TCC will also putting exploring the possibility of putting the data online once the system is physically in place.
Bhutan Post has not yet decided on the charge rates but it will be collecting delivery charges.