Even a short spell of rains exposes the ineffective stormwater drainage system in the eight added zones of the Chennai Corporation.

These zones, which account for 252 sq. km. of the Corporation area, require a comprehensive network of a minimum of 1,133 km of stormwater drains to cope with water logging. However, only an insignificant per cent of the requirement has been met so far, leaving large swathes of area vulnerable to the upcoming northeast monsoon.

During the monsoons, these zones – Tiruvottiyur, Manali, Madhavaram, Ambattur, Valasaravakkam, Alandur, Perungudi and Sholinganallur – are at the mercy of poorly-designed open drains, which are invariably clogged. The zones fall under four river basins.

According to Corporation sources, funds to the tune of Rs. 4,096 crore will be required to create stormwater drains and canal networks in these areas.

Not much has been done in Tiruvottiyur, Manali, Madhavaram and parts of Ambattur to meet the requirement of 435 km of stormwater drains and canals in the Kosasthalaiyar basin.

“Residents have been requesting more stormwater drains. Some side drains in areas such as Sathyamoorthi Nagar have been completed. We need structures to drain water from Subramaniya Nagar, Kalaignar Nagar, Madura Nagar, Jai Hind Nagar and Jyothi Nagar Main Road,” said S. Vincent, councillor of Ward 6 in Tiruvottiyur.

Micro drain facilities, created by the Corporation are also in a state of disrepair in the Kosasthalaiyar basin are: 500 metres of Tamaraikulam Canal, 1.3 km of Old Napalayam Canal, 2.2 km of Thulasi Nagar Canal, 1.2 km of Manali Pudhu TNHB Canal, 300 metres of Periya Eatchankuzhi Canal, 3.2 km of Kadapakkam Canal and 1.3 km of Madhavaram-Manali Canal.

A chunk of the 85-km stormwater drains in Adyar basin covering parts of Valasaravakkam and Alandur are also not ready. Over 1.5 km of Nandambakkam Canal and 0.93 km of Adambakkam Canal require strengthening, but the Corporation has taken no steps in this direction.

Many residential areas in the Cooum basin, including parts of Ambattur and Valasaravakkam, are not drained properly. A stormwater drain network of 190 km and the 2.8-km Padi Kuppam Canal, 1.3-km Nolambur Canal and 2.2 km Ambattur SIDCO Canal have to be developed for better drainage during the monsoon.

Over 373 km of stormwater drains have to be developed at the Kovalam basin under which Sholinganallur and Perungudi fall. The 340-metre-long Pallikaranai Canal and 1.08-km-long Secretariat Colony Canal have to be improved by the Corporation.

P. Gunalan, a councillor in Alandur, said inadequate drains near MKN Road Bus Stand have been a cause of concern. “One month ago, residents saved a baby from drowning in the water that stagnated there,” he added.

The Water Resources Department too, has to contribute towards flood-mitigation efforts by strengthening 1.87 km of Korattur Surplus Canal, 3.3 km of Veerangal Oodai, 4.07 km of Kilkattalai Canal, 3.97 km of Arasankazhani Canal and 3.5 km of Thanikasalam Canal.


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