Nepal | April 09, 2020

KMC mulling over urban regeneration targeting core areas of city

Thomas Bogaty

KATHMANDU: The Kathmandu Metropolitan City is planning to formulate policies and strategies for urban regeneration of the city core areas in the Valley.

The city core areas are congested with badly planned buildings.

The monuments of the Hanumandhoka Durbar Square, temples, historical structures and traditional mud and brick houses in the city core areas were destroyed or damaged in the massive earthquake of April 25. However, some of the structures and buildings survived the devastating quake.

According to Indra Man Singh Suwal, Coordinator of Kathmandu Urban Regeneration Committee Project, the survived buildings in the city cores areas will be revamped by urban regeneration in city core areas, without making any changes to the outer and inner outlook of the buildings, chowks and monuments.

The buildings and monuments in city core areas reflect the culture, tradition, architecture and settlement of indigenous Newar community dating back to Licchavi, Malla and Shah eras.

The urban regeneration will be done through the house pooling process with the consent from local house owners.

“Some of the buildings that do not have historical and cultural significance will be demolished to increase spaces between the cluster of traditional and historical houses with the consent from local house owners,” Suwal said, stressing that participation of indigenous locals is important to safeguard the tradition, culture, structures and houses.

The clusters of houses will have some traditional chowks for recreation and religious devotions. “KMC has allocated six months to formulate the policies and strategies. Teams of experts will convince locals to participate in urban regeneration of the city core areas. Feedbacks from the locals will determine the implementation of the urban regeneration,” he said, adding, “A working group will be formed after six months to implement the urban regeneration of the city core areas if the feedback is positive.”

Uttar Kumar Regmi, Chief of the Department of Physical Development and Construction at Kathmandu Metropolitan City, informed that KMC will facilitate legally for the urban regeneration of the city core areas with the support of central government for the physical infrastructure such as roads, streets, alleys, open spaces, electricity, drinking water supply lines and drainage systems.

“Each cluster will have 50-60 retrofitted houses equipped with solar lights and rainwater harvesting infrastructure. KMC will design some new houses suiting the local culture, traditions and architecture,” he said.

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