Kathmandu: Three years after the devastating earthquake in Nepal, restoration of the the quake-damaged historical monument Gaddi Baithak located in Kathmandu Durbar Square was completed on Wednesday.
Amid a special ceremony, Nepali Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli inaugurated the historical structure that falls under UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The neo- classical white building built in 1908 had witnessed severe damage during the earthquake of April 2015, which killed nearly 9,000 people and made over a half million homeless.
Addressing the inauguration event, the prime minister said that the Nepali government is committed to “build better” following the destructive earthquake.
Gaddi Baithak means “Royal Seat,” where the kings of Nepal were once crowned and where royalty used to welcome visiting heads of state and other high-ranking foreign guests.
The building was built with traditional materials like brick, mud mortar and timber wood, among others.
According to officials, the restoration has been completed with the joint efforts of engineers specialized in earthquake resilience and architects with expertise on cultural heritage preservation and restoration.
The unique building has been restored with seismic strengthening through targeted structural interventions but without compromising its heritage and integrity.
Besides Gaddi Baithak, four other ethnic Newari style architectural monuments located within the Durbar Square have also been inaugurated on the day.
Meanwhile, Nepali Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Rabindra Adhikari expressed hope that majority of the quake-damaged monuments can be reconstructed before Visit Nepal Year 2020.