The Department of Urban Development and Building Construction (DUDBC) has directed 12 apartment developers in Kathmandu to get done Detailed Damage Assessment by a third party and submit reports within two weeks.
The DUDBC move follows complaints lodged by people living near apartment buildings.
As per the government directive issued on May 27, 2015, developers have been asked to cover dangerous building portions posing risks to the people living around within four days, demolish vulnerable walls and structures within seven days, and hold Detail Damage Assessment mobilising a third party within two weeks.
So far, the government has conducted Rapid Post-Disaster Damage Assessment, or preliminary study of high-rise buildings.
Two apartment developers—Central Park at Bishal Nagar and Imperial Court at Sanepa—have responded to the government’s directive as of Thursday.
“We have dispatched the letters based on the complaints filed by the people living near,” Joshi said.
Once the developers submit the assessment , the DUDBC will study the data presented in the report and forward it to experts for a detailed study. “We don’t have the team to make detailed study. Hence, the department will first analyse data, and will pass them to the experts if they are correct,” Joshi said.
The DUDBC has stated its decision to let an expert panel study the documents is based on the difference in opinions of experts. A high-ranking DUDBC official told the Post, “There is a severe difference in opinions of even experts. Some say a particular building is completely safe, while others do not agree. We want to know what is the actual situation and decide what needs to be done,” he said.
If the developers fail to submit the documents on time, the DUDBC will initiate action and even penalise them.
Meanwhile, people living near high-rise buildings have urged the government to form a high-level taskforce to investigate the status of the buildings after the earthquake and formulate a new building code.
People affected by 13 apartments in the Kathmandu valley have formed a joint struggle committee
A statement recently issued by the struggle committee had stated the apartment developers had not followed the government’s directive to cover dangerous building portions within four days and demolish vulnerable walls and structures within seven days.