Bal­anc­ing be­tween old and new

Southasia - - CONTENTS - Raj Hi­rani Thim­phu, Bhutan

Every­where in the world, old is giv­ing way to the new and this is hap­pen­ing in Bhutan too. The Dragon King­dom suc­cess­fully pre­served its tra­di­tions and cul­ture for cen­turies. But it is now open­ing up to the world. And moder­nity has its own price. So in­stead of lament­ing the fact that tra­di­tional ar­chi­tec­ture is fast dis­ap­pear­ing from the cities of Bhutan, there is a need to un­der­stand the ground re­al­i­ties. The people of Bhutan need mod­ern res­i­den­tial fa­cil­i­ties. The need for res­i­den­tial com­plexes with all the mod­ern ac­ces­sories be­comes even more im­por­tant if one takes into ac­count the grow­ing num­ber of tourists who are vis­it­ing Bhutan.

There­fore, to save the his­tor­i­cal ar­chi­tec­ture and to find a so­lu­tion to the coun­try’s grow­ing need for new res­i­den­tial blocks, the govern­ment of Bhutan should mark the build­ings ac­cord­ing to their his­tor­i­cal and re­li­gious im­por­tance. All those build­ings that have any kind of sig­nif­i­cance should be pre­served while the rest should be de­mol­ished to build new struc­ture. This can keep both the tra­di­tion­al­ists as well as the mod­ernists happy.

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