Urban Planning: Lhayulkha town in Haa, for which planning began in 2005-2006 is likely to be implemented next year along with the dzongkhag thromde, for which a local area plan is underway.

The plan for a new town was conceived in 1986 along with the dzongkhag structural plan. In 2005-2006, two secondary roads were constructed and streetlights were installed in Lhayulkha.

Officials said that in 2010 the National Land Commission surveyed the town area during the national cadastral survey. The commission issued the town’s thram in 2013 and handed it to the dzongkhag in August 2014.

The Haa municipal engineer said that they have started with a local area plan design for the thromde, which should be complete by October.

The draft plan will be presented to the dzongkhag, municipality and the public for feedback. Following which it will then be submitted to the ministry. There will be several rounds of public consultation and presentations before the plan is finalised.

The plan is expected to be implemented in 2017.

Lhayulkha was demarcated under the thromde besides the existing Haa town earlier but with Parliament approving the dzongkhag thromde, the area from Katsho bridge till above the army training centre will fall under the dzongkhag thromde.

Since the thromde area is large, two local area plans may be required, said the municipal engineer.

The engineer said there is still a need to create awareness on the benefits of the thromde, as some have doubts whether  or not to remain under the town.

In December 2015, following the endorsement of the dzongkhag thromde by Parliament, around 35 Wangtsa villagers in Katsho appealed to the works and human settlement minister requesting a re-deliberation of the thromde boundary. The villagers opted not to be included under the thromde.

In 2013 some villagers of Lhayulkha also appealed to the Prime Minister requesting that they be excluded from the thromde. However, they have now decided to remain under the thromde.

Meanwhile, officials concerned said they are hopeful that on understanding the benefits of a thromde, people will opt to remain under it.

Dawa Gyelmo