After almost a year’s delay the renovation of the Lhuentse Dzong is almost complete now. All that remains of the renovation is interior painting, and maintenance of statues. The September 2009 earthquake severely damaged the Dzong.
“After earthquake caused some cracks and damages, the ministry of home and cultural affairs said the Dzong needs to be renovated. It was already planned in the 10th Five Year Plan. However, works delayed by about a year due to financial problem and in addition, the earthquake caused major damages,” said Tshering Namgay, the Project Manager.
He said major structures have been completed without compromising the age-old traditional architectural designs. Once complete, the Dzong will return to its former glory.
“Outer appearance is exactly like it was in the past. But we have added “Zeri” upon instruction from the former home minister and it is similar to one in Trashigang Dzong. Except for some partitions inside the Dzong, everything is just like before” said the Project Manager.
Initially, the renovation cost was about Nu. 120 million but it increased to over Nu. 160 million after the earthquake.
Yongzin Ngagay Wangchuk, a great Drukpa Lama and the son of Pel Ngawang Chogyel of Ralung meditated where the Dzong stands today. In 1541, he built a small temple following a divine direction from a local deity. The temple was then called Kurtoe Lhuentse Phodrang.
Source: Bhutan Broadcasting Service