| November 28, 2020

A new tower to rise besides the ruins of Dharahara

KATHMANDU, June 17: Instead of rebuilding the Dharahara Tower, the government has decided to build a similar modern tower next to the ruins of the historical monument which collapsed during last year's devastating earthquake.

"We have decided to build a new tower similar to the Dharahara, next to the old structure instead of rebuilding it. The collapsed structure will be preserved as it is," Director General of the Department of Archeology (DoA) Bhes Narayan Dahal, informed. He said that the new tower will be built to the east of the old structure.

He said that the DoA has decided to leave the collapsed structure, which is also known as Bhimsen Tower, as it is.  
Officials at the DoA said that the new tower is to be built following modern architectural design but will look similar to the old Dharahara in appearance. They said that the new structure will have all the modern facilities and technology such as lift, ladder as well as two-storey parking space.

Unlike the old structure, the new one will be of 11-storey with the height of 245 feets. The collapsed tower was 9-stroey before it crumbled due to the April 25 quake last year.

"We have already hired a private consultant to make the conceptual design and drawing of the new Dharahara," Dahal told Republica.
He also informed that the consultant has been assigned to submit the details of its drawing/design, cost estimation, construction time within two months.

"Dharahara was a historically and archeologically important structure but unfortunately we lost it. So, we have decided to preserve the collapsed structure as it is. It will serve as a remainder of the devastating earthquake for the general public," he added.

In order to create space for building the new Dharahra next to the old structure, the DoA has also decided to remove the existing buildings of government offices like the Postal Office and Taksar Department where the Central Bank used to mint coins.

"We are consulting with all the concerned authorities to relocate their offices from the area," said Dahal.

The DoA has asked the Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) office to carry out necessary steps to shift those government offices from the area and demolish the buildings for constructing the new tower.  

"As per the DoA's direction, we have asked the concerned authorities to relocate their offices from the area," said chief executive officer of KMC Rudra Singh Tamang. "The cleared area will be developed into a garden."  

The then Pime Minister of Nepal Bhimsen Thapa had build the 11-storey Dharahara about 200 years ago. The magnificent watch tower, built to observe approaching enemies, had collapsed during the 1933 earthquake and was restored to 9-storey by the then Rana Prime Minister Juddha Samsher JBR.