Hundreds of vehicles plying the Satyamurthy Sagar dam, Poondi reservoir, will soon have to take an alternate route. In order to preserve and strengthen the dam, the Water Resources Department proposes to build a causeway further downstream.
The dam was named after the former mayor S. Satyamurthy who was instrumental in creating the reservoir to supply drinking water to Chennai. The 234-metre facility is used by a minimum of 200 vehicles daily.
It connects Poondi with several villages, including Ramancheri, Krishnapuram, Thomur, Kunipalayam and Pennalurpet.
Metropolitan Transport Corporation buses too use the dam to reach villages such as Ariyapakkam and Ariyathur.
Officials of the Water Resources said that the State government has sanctioned Rs. 2.86 crore to build a causeway across the surplus course about 350 metre downstream of the dam. The 400-metre-long and 4.25-metre-wide causeway would be built and approach roads would be created for one km on either side. Though the 68 years-old dam is a concrete masonry dam, the continuous plying of vehicles would weaken the structure.
The work is expected to begin in two months. Once the causeway is built in eight months, traffic will not be allowed on the dam and gates will be erected, said an official.
Residents would be able to use the causeway throughout the year as the culvert beneath the facility would have a capacity to carry nearly 12,000 cubic feet of water per second (cusecs).
The department will soon start work to repair damages in some of the 14 shutters as the reservoir plays a vital role in storing water for city’s needs. The water body now has storage of 1,310 million cubic feet (mcft) against its capacity of 3,231 mcft.
It receives about 300 cusecs of Krishna water from the Kandaleru-Poondi canal. This in turn is used to supply drinking water to the city.
Keywords: Poondi reservoir