The Kathmandu Valley Development Authority has drafted guidelines for boundary wall construction to ensure safety of pedestrians and other street users and promote pedestrian-friendly environment.
The guidelines are also aimed at protecting and enhancing the aesthetic amenity of neighborhoods, wards and streets while developing individual or institutional buildings and premises.
More than 100,000 boundary walls of private and government houses/buildings were fully or partially damaged in the April 25 earthquake in the Valley.
Collapse of the poorly constructed roadside boundary walls alone was responsible for the death of at least 150 persons among 1,222 killed in the quakes in the capital, according to officials.
“Besides providing security and privacy, boundary walls are also a vital component for enhancing the appearance of the locality.
Further, recent experiences show that the boundary walls are related with the safety issue of street users, especially in a high risk seismic zone like Nepal,” read the guidelines.
The draft guidelines also stipulate that boundary wall along the road can have a maximum height of 1.8 meters (6 feet), in which maximum 1.2 meters (4 feet) of its lower portion should be solid or concrete whereas the upper portion needs to be in the form of view fencing.
In case of government and public properties, boundary walls along the road can have maximum of 0.9 meter (3 feet) solid lower portion whereas its upper portion needs in the form of view fencing.
The height of wall shall be measured from the level of the pavement (footpath) and in the absence of a pavement, from the natural level of the ground outside the property immediately adjacent to the wall.
Side and rear boundary wall can have a maximum height of 6 feet, which may not have view fences.
According to the guidelines, the boundary wall at the turnings of the road should not obstruct the sight distance of vehicles. The property owner should take responsibility of any mishaps caused by unsafe, weak and old boundary wall structure.
Moreover, the local agency can make the property owner to demolish and reconstruct such old and unsafe boundary walls. The boundary wall should be safe and stable with proper structure and design.
The boundary wall could be designed by a structural engineer registered with Nepal