Thimphu fast transforming into a luminous sporting hub

A glittering artificial turf in Thimphu 

KARMA CHIMI

Thimphu

In recent times, the increases in number of artificial turfs like futsal court and football ground has transformed Thimphu into a glistering sporting hub.

When such sports centre is set up, it is followed by rise in number of floodlight and lighting facilities around that vicinity, adding that extra glitter into the otherwise drab city surroundings.

According to Thimphu Thromde, they have approved 16 futsal grounds in the city premises of which 15 have been completed and almost all of them provide the lighting facilities. Besides the futsal turfs, there are four artificial football ground under the Thromde.

Reports from Bhutan Power Cooperation shows that the floodlight for the futsal turf consumes far lesser energy compared to the artificial football turf like that of Changlingmithang.

In a month, one futsal court owner says that they pay around Nu 10,000 as electric bill for all necessary energy consumed including the floodlight which is the main factor for the energy consumption.

As the floodlight is used during the night time, futsal court owners charge extra during such hours.

Bangdu Futsal in Changbangdu charges Nu 1,000 per hour during the daytime but charges Nu 1,200 per hour at night, during the weekends and on public holidays.

In most of the futsal court and football ground, the number of customers is high during the weekends and after the office hours.

One football enthusiast, Sherab Dorji, 25, remarks that because of the floodlight it had made a football geek like him to play after his office work but laughingly adds that the fee should be reduced.

Most of the football enthusiasts prefer to play during the night time as the environment is cooler and more preferable than the day time.

Likewise, Tshering Dorji, 27, commented about the increase in the number of futsal and artificial football ground in the capital which provides more choices and platforms to the people residing in Thimphu.

Meanwhile, some drivers interviewed by the Bhutan Times have mentioned that the sharp light from the floodlights has been a nuisance to their eye and concerns over an accident because of it.

For now, Thimphu Thromde hasn’t received any complaint regarding the floodlight but if they do, they will review the cases and act accordingly says Tashi Phuntsho, the Chief Development Regulatory Division of the Thimphu Thromde.

Since there has been a steady rise in establishment of such facilities, Thimphu Thromde following the 1st Thromde Tshogde, 3rd Council, have come up with some guidelines to facilitate the construction of futsal grounds.

The guidelines, among others,  include minimum plot size of 25 decimals, minimum futsal play area of 18 decimals, minimum parking space for 7 vehicles, all futsal grounds to have minimum amenities like washroom, changing room and canteen, minimum setback of 1.5m for drainage and safety purposes and public clearance should be there, especially from the neighbours.