Photo Courtesy: Daily Bhutan

Third phase of Centenary Farmers’ Market in progress

Most of the vendors were happy to move into a newly renovated floor of CFM complete with food stalls and an aesthetic space to sit and relax.

It has also become a tourist attraction.

The ground floor of CFM, where imported vegetables and fruits are sold, is currently being renovated.

According to the Deputy Chief Urban Planner and Architect, Dorji Yangki, the third phase of the renovation work on CFM is on schedule for June 2024.

She said, “Before starting the project, we carefully looked at what was good and what needed fixing in the existing structure. Our goal is to keep the good parts while making others better, like adding wooden elements to soften the look of the concrete and making more space for everyone on the first floor.”

She said the design ensures the shoppers and visitors can move around easily, and there is a separate space for workers and the public.

“Right now, we’re excited about tearing down a wall to make a big open area with seats and stuff to make it nicer for everyone. We’re also working with the electric company to get rid of poles and wires and put everything underground. Overall, we want to make the place much better, nicer, and easier to access for everyone,” she added.

Further she said, “It’s really important to listen to what people have to say, especially those who are directly involved like vendors, customers, and service providers. People seem happy with what we’re doing, but keeping things clean is tough. We’re dealing with litter and people not using public areas properly, but we’re trying to fix it. We hope that by raising awareness and getting people to think more about it, things will get better over time.”

The revitalization of CFM, now known as Kaja Throm, started with the first phase on the first floor on 26 June 2022. The north side on the first floor was completed on 17 December 2022.

The second phase, which is the central and south sides, was completed on 31 August 2023. It was officially opened to the public on 18 September 2023.

The third phase is the ground floor, and the site development is under renovation.

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