In an effort to protect vanishing water bodies in peri-urban areas, Rain Centre, a city-based voluntary organisation, plans to hold meetings with builders to encourage housing projects around lakes.

Following rapid urbanisation in the Chennai metropolitan area, several water bodies have lost their relevance and become vulnerable to misuse.

Volunteers of Rain Centre are approaching various builders’ associations to sensitise developers. The organisation has already conducted awareness programmes on rainwater harvesting for builders.

Encouraging initiatives

Director of Rain Centre, Sekhar Raghavan, said several new projects in and around the city comprise lakefront apartments. A recent visit to a project site in Guduvanchery revealed it had four abandoned agricultural wells and the builder had retained those wells.

Such initiatives can be replicated in other projects. Developing projects around the lake bund, wherever possible, without encroaching into water bodies will help in quick recharge of groundwater, he said.

Representatives of Rain Centre had recently made a presentation to officials of the municipal administration and water supply. The presentation suggested that builders may be encouraged to take up maintenance of water bodies near their projects.

“We have written to the Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Associations of India to hold a meeting,” said Mr. Raghavan. Credai office-bearers said they are reviewing the proposal and a joint meeting will be organised soon.

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