By Ilda Hoxha

The municipality of Lezha which was affected by the earthquake of November 26, 2019 counts 9 demolished buildings out of the 10 scheduled. The remaining building is a partially collapsed object on “Luigj Gurakuqi” street, where several businesses and families live without knowing whether the building will be demolished or not. In the meanwhile, the building reconstruction process is lagging behind in most objects. The 4 buildings on “Hydajet Lezha” street should have been ready since May, but currently only the structure has been established, whereas the 3 buildings foreseen for reconstruction on “Kolë Toma” street are still in the initial phase.

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“We will proceed with the reconstruction of 10 buildings, out of which more than 200 families will get apartments.”- stated in an interview for ATSH, stated the perfect of the District of Lezha, Gjok Jaku on January 2, 2021.

Based on this statement we addressed the municipality of Lezha with a request for information and inquired on the number of buildings which will be demolished and then reconstructed.

Lezha municipality response for Faktoje

According to the answer of the Municipality of Lezha, 91 buildings have been damaged by the earthquake, out of which:

-39 buildings need enforcement

-42 buildings need reconstruction of common areas

-10 buildings need to be demolished (9 buildings have been demolished and are being reconstructed)”, as emphasized in the response of the Municipality of Lezha for Faktoje.

The municipality does not specify which building is yet to be demolished.

Lezha municipality response for Faktoje

Faktoje went to Lezha in September to verify which is the last object scheduled to be demolished and to check on the stages of the reconstruction process for the other buildings.

During observations on the field, we noticed that the buildings didn’t have numbers as identified on the list provided by the municipality of Lezha.

Building on “Luigj Gurakuqi” street, September 14, 2021

On “Luigj Gurakuqi” street, where according to the municipality is located the building which needs to be demolished, it turns out that only half of the building had been demolished. Despite the half demolished image in this photo from September, we learnt that the half-ruined building is inhabited by some families.

Some residents of the building told us that there weren’t any damages in their apartments.

“There have no been any damages from the earthquake. We have not been told about the possibility of demolishing the part we live in”- states for Faktoje one of the residents who whishes to remain anonymous.

Building on “Luigj Gurakuqi” street, September 14, 2021

“We have not been informed of any possible demolition. It is the other side of the building which has been damaged, not this one”- states another resident.

Several businesses continue to exercise their activity peacefully on the first floor of this building, as well as the residents, who have not been informed if the object was supposed to be demolished or not.

Building on “Luigj Gurakuqi” street, September 14, 2021

The inerts due to the demolition of the other half lie around this half-building, whereas the residents cohabitate peacefully with this reality.

We addressed the municipality of Lezha with another request for information, where we inquired whether the existing object on “Luigj Gurakuqi” street is building 71, listed among the objects to be demolished and how they will proceed with the half-building. We are still waiting for a response from the Municipality of Lezha.

Request for information addressed to the Municipality of Lezha

The building reconstruction process is lagging behind

After some verification on the building on “Luigj Gurakuqi” street Faktoje made another observation in the sites where work is being completed for the reconstruction of other buildings.

A site for 3 buildings has been opened on “Kolë Toma” street, according to the information stated on the works table, but works had not gone beyond the initial stage.

Construction site on “Kolë Toma” street, September 14, 2021

On the table are displayed data on the investor, which is FSHZ, the project’s implementers and the amount of 283.150.000 ALL, but it is lacking the deadline for the works, the initiation and end date, even though as we have emphasized inprevious verifications,this is a legal obligation.

During the verification on the site on “Hydajet Lezha” street, we came to the conclusion that the structures have been established for 4 buildings, according to the information on the works table, it should have ended on May this year. The project, which is being funded by the government, implemented by FSHZH and valued at 467, 500.00, includes the date for the commencement of the works November 2020.

Construction site on “Kolë Toma” street, September 14, 2021

Meanwhile, on “Skënderbeg” neighborhood the construction of building 88 is complete.

Building ‘88’ in Lezha

In 2020,  State Commission for Reconstruction approved the Decision of the Municipal Council of Lezha for the funding of the reconstruction of severely damaged or mildly damaged objects, which are at the DS1-DS3 damage scale, which shouldn’t be reconstructed from the beginning but need to be reconstructed or repaired.

According to the decision for 43 beneficiaries classified at the DS1 damage scale a fund of 4,3 million ALL will be allocated; for 53 beneficiaries classified at the DS2 damage scale the amount of the fund will be 13,2 million ALL; for 111 beneficiaries classified at the DS3 damage scale the value of the fund will be 55,5 million ALL.

In the decision it is defined that for the city of Lezha a fund of 63 million ALL will be allocated for structure interventions for damaged buildings according to the DS4 and DS5 scale.