Thimphu Thromde is gearing up to open three vegetable markets in Olakha, Changbangdhu and Hejo before July this year.
Thimphu Thrompon Kinlay Dorjee said, “Thromde is constructing three more vegetable markets at Hejo Samteling neighborhood node, Olakha neighborhood node and Changbangdhu in order to facilitate people to get vegetables and other farm products at their place, and to ease human and traffic congestion.”
According to a site engineer from Thimphu Thromde’s Infrastructure Division, Sonam Namgay, Thimphu’s weekend market, Centenary Farmers’ Market (CFM), is the largest domestic market for the farmers in Bhutan.
“Farmers come from all over the country to sell their farm products in the market. Also thousands of people come to shop and traffic congestion is a serious issue as more number of people come with their cars,” Sonam Namgay said.
A shopper, Tenzin Dorji, 54, said, “Every Saturday, I drive 7 kms from Babesa till CFM to buy vegetables for the week. I do not mind the long distance I have to drive, but the only thing that disappoints me when I reach there is the lack of parking space. Sometimes, I need to make three rounds to park my car and a couple of times, I parked my car in front of BOB office because there was no parking space in market areas.”
The project worth Nu 19.7 million is funded by the Government of India (GOI) Small Development Project (SDP) IV. “Along with the construction of vegetable markets, Thromde is also constructing two public toilets and meat shops.”
The new vegetable markets will provide proper shelter to the farmers and allow them to sell their products.
“There are many farmers who sell vegetables on the streets and public plots. At Olakha, there are around 21 vendors selling vegetables and fruits. And the area in which they had built temporary sheds to sell their vegetables belongs to someone else. So in order to provide them with shelter, the Thromde is constructing the vegetable markets,”the Thromde official said.
The three markets are almost complete and will be opened by first week of July. Thromde is also planning to construct vegetable markets at Babesa, Simtokha and Taba.