Black topping of Thimphu’s 250 km of roads to be completed in 18 months

An estimated Nu 295 million has been allocated to resurface Thimphu’s 250 kilometres (ms) of roads and to construct and maintain the city’s drains and footpaths.

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is funding Nu 214.4 million the government is putting in Nu 80.3 million for the project that is being carried out in three packages.

The first package that covers Taba, Jungshina, Samtenling and the Sunday market area was given to the joint venture between SL and Nima Construction Company for a contract amount of Nu. 50.17 million.

The second package which covers Motithang, Changangkha, core town areas, Babesa, Changbangdu, Olakha and Semtokha was awarded to the joint venture between Hi-Tech and Chhimi RD for a contract amount of Nu. 103.9 million.

The final package constituting Changzamtog and Changedaphu was awarded to Penjor Construction for a contract amount o Nu. 60.27 million.

The project, which started on May 24, is to be completed within 18 months. However, with the arrival of rainy season, black topping has been discontinued but construction and maintenance of drainage and footpath is on going.

The government’s allocation of Nu 80.3 million will be used for improvement of the city roads not covered by ADB. The work will start by the first week of October to be completed within eight months.

“By May 2018, all the roads in Thimphu will be resurfaced and free of potholes,” a Thimphu thromde official said.  “Everyday we get complaints from motorists about potholes. While a few are small, most are quite large. We also hear complaints like thromde is not doing anything but I would like to clarify that we already started our work.”

Thimphu Thromde’s chief engineer of Infrastructure Division, Sangay Wangdi, said that if black topping of road is not completed within 18 months individual contractors will be penalized. Thromde will charge 0.01 per cent of the total contract amount a day as late penalty. For instance, if Penjor Construction fails to meet the deadline, Nu. 6,027.3 will be charged per day.

“We will consider delays if major disaster happens like a massive earthquake but this doesn’t include rainfall,” he said. “Though we promise to provide safer roads we cannot guarantee that there won’t be any potholes ever because the density of vehicle will eventually damage the roads.”

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