The Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) has delayed its plan to reopen Ratna Park for the public by two weeks.
Ratna Park, which is situated in the heart of Kathmandu , was all set to be opened for the public on Tuesday, the New Year day of 2072 BS. The park, which is being renovated for the past six months as part of the city beautification project initiated ahead of the Saarc Summit, was expected to be completed by April 14.
“Reconstruction and renovation works at the park have been completed. The park will now be reopen for the public on April 28,” said Rabin Man Shrestha, chief of Environment Division at the KMC.
According to Shrestha, the delay was caused by KMC being occupied with the major task of making the Valley plastic bag free zone from the Nepali New year.
The park which used to look dirty, dusty and weary until six months ago has now been filled with colourful flowers and lots of greenery, while the umbrella shaped resting places and benches have been colourfully painted. Newly constructed footpaths and ponds are other fresh additions to the park.
“The park now wears a new look, but I am not sure if the authorities will be able preserve it in its current state for long,” said Bishnu Maya Thapa, a street vendor who does brisk business near the gates of the park situated in one of the most busiest places in Kathmandu .
KMC officials are planning to charge Rs 25 for the general public and Rs 10 for students to enter the renovated park, which will boast upgraded infrastructures, including drinking water taps, new footpaths and garden sheds. KMC authorities said the amount raised from entry tickets will be used for its regular maintenance.
The metropolis has invested Rs8 million for the renovation of the park. Popular as relaxing spot for the public, the park was in a sorry state owing to mismanagement. In recent years, the park also earned notoriety as a bargaining place for prostitutes.
The metropolis has said it will be employing 15 people for providing security and maintain cleanliness at the park that spreads over four ropanis of land and surrounded by a 10 feet wall.