Urban Planning Division is one of the divisions in Thimphu Thromde entrusted to bring city residents together to gather ideas, discuss opportunities and challenges, and provide professional advice about current and future land use and development in Thimphu Thromde. 

Our work involves responding to urgent planning needs by reviewing proposed developments to make sure they follow existing policies; reviewing public spaces; providing planning advice to other divisions and the public; and preparing recommendations for decision-makers. 

We manage a wide range of urban planning initiatives, such as the Thimphu Structure Plan 2002-2027, and 15 Local Area Plans spread across 26.00 sq.km of the city. Most of the LAPs in the south are developed with the Asian Development Bank Funding and LAPs in the North are developed with the World Bank Funding. The tool used in the preparation of the LAPs is Land Pooling and as of today, the land contribution by land and property owners for development purposes stands at more than 260 acres. With the vision to make a city “a safe, sustainable, vibrant and livable city in the region”, we have been grappling with and challenged by several issues. Increased urban population, land fragmentation, and ad-hoc development have been perennial issues that are expected to sustain for some time. The already inadequate urban infrastructure and services are overwhelmed by increased demand. The peri-urban and sub-urban areas are characterized by haphazard developments which constrain proper planning and add to urban challenges. The urban planning administration and management of the city is entrusted with the Thromde which is also working under immense constraints of limited legal frameworks and weak institutional setup. Considering these challenges and aspirations, we would like to once again revive our commitment to serving the city residents.

To improve city quality of life, planning a community needs the help of many people working together to achieve a common goal, including the residents, developers, other divisions and elected officials.

Currently, it is staffed by 9 officials which comprise GIS officers, Architects, and Urban Planners and is headed by a Chief Urban Planner. 

Core Mandates:

  1. Carry out study of urban development trends and issues

  2. Prepare and review local area plans and DCRs

  3. Prepare and review standards, guidelines, and relevant regulations

  4. Implement the provision of the Thimphu Structure Plan 2002-2027, local area plans and other relevant regulations.

Chief Urban Planner: 

  1. Assists the Executive Secretary 

  2. Managing the activities of all urban planning/design/mobility/GIS professionals under the Division

  3. Planning and implementing capacity development programs for the Division.

  4. Preparing/Reviewing the urban development plans/Local Area Plans.

  5. Evaluating all plans for government approval and interpreting the approved plans, rules and regulations to the technical and executive staffs. 

  6. Preparing annual budgets, five-year plans, progress reports, rules and regulations.

  7. Developing and reviewing rules and regulations in support of urban development plans.

  8. Participates in studies involving physical, transportation and other urban project planning.

  9. Involves and consults all the stakeholders including the public on matters pertaining to planning, zoning and related projects.

  10. Prepares technical papers/studies for the Head of the Agency.

  11. Provides technical advice to the technical committees and public consultations.

Urban Planning Section

  • Preparing/Reviewing the urban development plans/Local Area Plans.

  • Participates in studies involving physical, transportation and other urban project planning.

  • Involve and consult all the stakeholders including the public on matters pertaining to planning, zoning and related projects.

  • Provides technical advice to the technical committees and public consultations.

  • Prepares technical papers/studies for the Head of the Agency.

Current Staff Strength: Three Urban Planners.

Urban Design Section

  • Prepare urban design concepts, schematic designs, and preliminary plans including landscape architecture, site design and circulation.

  • Prepare construction plans, layout plans, specifications, and bidding documents

  • Prepare design guidelines and written reports related to road improvements and redevelopment project areas

  • Developing and reviewing rules and regulations in support of urban designs.

  • Participates in studies involving physical, transportation and other urban design projects.

  • Involve and consult all the stakeholders including the public on matters pertaining to urban design and related projects.

  • Provides technical advice to the technical committees and public consultations. 

Current Staff Strength: Two Architects. 

Urban Mobility Section

  • Prepare and review of urban mobility plan.

  • Developing urban mobility design guidelines.

  • Carry out traffic studies.

  • Participates in studies involving physical, transportation and other urban mobility projects.

  • Involve and consult all the stakeholders including the public on matters pertaining to urban mobility related projects.

  • Provides technical advice to the technical committees and public consultations.

  • Prepares technical papers/studies for the Head of the Agency.

Currently Staff Strength: Two Urban Planners

Geographic Information System Section

  • Develop a GIS based map of Thimphu City.

  • Implementation of a GIS based system in the City in future.

  • Provide structure GIS data in server based on requirements from the user divisions

  • Collaborate with other divisions in developing their GIS capacity through proper training for usage of GIS Software.

  • Provide training to update and analyze for use in specific divisions.

  • Conduct GPS surveys and consultations as and when required.

  • Prepare GIS data dictionary for future users and system integration.

Current Staff Strength: Two GIS Officers 

 

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