English | Dzongkha Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Drugyel Dzong reconstruction on track

Oct 24, 2019

The reconstruction project of Drugyel Dzong in Paro is well on track with more than half of the works achieved. At present, with the current progress, it is around six months ahead of the December 2022 deadline.

The dzong had remained in a derelict state after it caught fire in 1961.

The new structures are gradually replacing the ruins of the fortress built some 300 years ago. And today, the reconstruction project is in its fourth phase. Of the planned works for this stage, only the fixing of a gallery and construction of a building remain.

According to project officials, the current phase has been the toughest so far. All the structures had to be constructed on a steep slope.

“Since all the constructions are on a cliff, stone and mud walls had to be constructed. Doing so was challenging. We had to use machines to cut the stones and make it so the foundation is strong. We had to use iron rods and cement as well,” said Namgay Dorji, the Project Manager of  Drukgyel Dzong Reconstruction Project.

Despite this challenge, works have picked pace. The project officials expect to complete the fourth phase by December this year, six months before the proposed due date.

Speaking of the challenges ahead, the project manager said, for now, timely completion of interior furnishing and fixtures could be one. The other concern is cold weather conditions as the works are contracted out to the labourers.

“When its snows and becomes impossible to work, we have to call off the day’s works. However, we still have to pay the workers. This did affect our work progress. Nevertheless, in summer, although it rains every afternoon here, we continued with the works. We gave it on contract to the workers. They had to complete a certain portion of the work on the given day irrespective of the weather,” added Namgay Dorji.

So far, of the Nu 500 M allocated for the project, Nu 187 M has been utilised.

The DrugyelDzong restoration project was initiated in 2016 upon the Royal Command of His Majesty The King to celebrate the birth of His Royal Highness The Gyalsey, commemorate the arrival of Zhabdrung in the country in 1616 AD and the birth year of Guru Rinpoche.

Sangay Chezom

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