Contesting Place in a Post-colonial Space

(Re)colonizing Tradition

A Pedestrian Guide to a "Traditional" City

Welcome to Bhaktapur

[1] The Tea Stall at Guhepukhu

[2] Nava Durga Chitra Mandir

[3] Khauma Square

[4] Tourist Motor Park

[5] Indrani Pitha

[6]Lasku Dhwakha Gate

[7]Char Dham

[8]Cafe de Temple

[9]Batsala Temple

[10] Batsala Temple

[11] City Hall

[12] The Procession Route

[13] Pujari Math

[14] The Peacock Restaurant

[15] Sewage Collection Ponds

[16] Bhairavanath Temple

"German Project"

The BDP‹or "German Project" as it is generally called in Bhaktapur‹was a cooperative effort between the West German government and HMG of Nepal, which emphasized the historical restoration of Bhaktapur¹s religious monuments and renovated over 180 pieces of religious architecture. During its height, over 1,200 laborers, twelve long-term German experts, and sixty Nepal administers where employed.

     The project was divided into three phases. In the first, which lasted until 1976, the BDP¹s activities focused on the historic conservation of homes of priests (maths), as well as other archeologically important buildings. The project also concentrated on town planning and development and basic infrastructure like drinking water, sewerage, road construction, and solid waste management. In the second phase (which ended in 1979/1980 during the prereferendum disturbances),other "soft" or cultural programs were implemented: economic promotion, education, and tourism. The first two phases were guided by the notion of "integrated urban development," which meant a plan designed by German experts and

    administrated by Nepalis chosen by the national government. The plan was a parallel execution of town development and building activities, complemented by economic promotion. Neither the GTZ experts nor HMG was worried at the time about integrating with the existing Bhaktapur community or administrative structure. In fact, the local community was entirely bypassed through the creation of the Bhaktapur Development Board, which was considered adequate at the time because Nepal had little or no democratic institutions on the local level.

     In the third phase, beginning in the early 1980s and ending 6 years latter, the project became concerned with "integration" of the project into the local community. This occurred because despite obvious physical achievements that are recognized and appreciated by most of the city¹s residents, the BDP was riddled with strikes and punctured by the physical beating of its laborers and staff members. This occurred, as we saw in the oppositional map and as I detail more in chapter 3, because of political demonstrations, strikes, and a demand to the end of the autocratic and undemocratic Panchayat system.


Mandala Map

Tourist Map


Tour Map

Durbar Square

Tacapa Map



Key | Bibliography | Maps

© 2001 Gregory Price Grieve , Site design by GDL Historical Laboratories. .