…..Thromde says no need to worry
Rajesh Rai | Phuentsholing
Two large buildings in Phuentsholing town, the three-storied vegetable market and the Multilevel Car Park (MLCP), have developed cracks that have worried residents of the thromde.
The vegetable market building opened in October 2018 and MLCP in January 2019.
The vegetable market has some minor cracks at one side of the wall and ceiling on the second floor.
The vegetable vendors conduct their daily business but are worried about a future mishap.
A vegetable vendor said that rainwater seep through the cracks and fell on her stall.
“I have informed the thromde office repeatedly,” she said, adding there was no action. “We are nobody so our voices are unheard.”
If there is an earthquake, it would be risky, the vendor said.
Meanwhile, several vegetable vendors have been facing another problem in the building during the rainy season. Due to some leakages on the roof, the rain falls straight on their stalls on the ground floor damaging the goods. The rainwater then stagnates in the place.
Vendors on the ground floor have bought tarpaulin sheets for the fourth time but they say they are useless during heavy rain.
“For the past three years we have requested the concerned authority to do something,” a vendor said. “The floor becomes like a swimming pool at times.”
Phuentsholing Thromde executive secretary (ES) Lungten Jamtsho said those cracks are the construction joints between the two columns.
“Gaps between the columns were filled with bricks and mortar, so nothing to be concerned about,” he said.
“The construction joints were sealed because of the leakage. But the construction joints have again widened because of minor vibrations. But there is nothing to worry about the structural integrity of the building,” he said.
On the roofing issues, initially, it was designed as an open roof, he said. However, due to heavy monsoon and complaints from the vendors the roof had to be installed. “So the roofing for that part was done later on.”
“But there were some challenges connecting the old and new roofing. It was not done properly and that is why there was water leakage,” he said.
However, after inspection, thromde carried out improvement works. But the problems continue. “We are going to redo this roofing,” he said.
Cracks on MLCP
The MLCP in Phuentsholing has cracked floors and ceilings.
The ES Lungten Jamtsho said two separate buildings were joined and there is nothing to worry about. “It has two parts,” he said.
“The cracks are openings of two structures because of the vehicular movement and vibration. That is why there are cracks. But the building itself is designed like that.”
However, Phuentsholing Thromde is also thinking to seal the cracks with rubber so that the vibration will be absorbed without leading to cracks. The ES said that even if they cover the cracks with steel beams, it will not last long because there won’t be elasticity.
The multilevel car park was constructed at a cost of Nu 64M. Construction started in July 2016 and it was inaugurated in January 2019.