Work on 5th facility to meet city’s drinking water needs to pick up in mid-January

The project to create a fifth reservoir in Tiruvallur district to cater to Chennai’s drinking water needs will gain momentum after Pongal.

The Water Resources Department (WRD) expects to start the major portion of work to link water bodies in Kannankottai and Thervoy Kandigai in Gummidipoondi taluk next month as large stretches of lands would become available for the project.

A total of about 1,500 acres of land is required to create the reservoir, slated to come up nearly 14 km away from Uthukottai, the State’s entry point for the Kandaleru- Poondi canal.

At present, the department is implementing the project in the 630 acres of land available. By mid-January, about 600 acres is expected to be acquired in the region. Of the total project cost of Rs. 330 crore, Rs.160 crore has been allotted for land acquisition.

Officials of the WRD said that work to form a 7-km-long earthen bund would be started once more land is available.

The new reservoir would have a capacity to hold 1,000 million cubic feet of water when filled twice. This is equal to the volume of water drawn from the existing reservoirs now to supply Chennai for nearly 45 days.

Besides its catchment areas, the reservoir would be fed with Krishna water from Andhra Pradesh.

The new reservoir would help store additional Krishna water when the four reservoirs in Poondi, Cholavaram, Red Hills and Chembarambakkam, are full.

Preliminary work is now on to create a 7-km-long link canal to bring Krishna water from the Kandaleru Poondi canal to the reservoir.

“We will use the sand excavated from the water bodies to create the bund for the reservoir and the canal. We are now excavating sand to form the canal for a stretch of one km. Once more land is available, we will be able to take up work on the entire stretch simultaneously,” said the official.

Villages such as Senjiagaram, Tamaraikuppam, Karadiputhur and Kannankottai are also being provided with six single-lane and double-lane bridges wherever the canal crosses the roads. “We are also constructing footbridges at four locations to provide access for residents to their lands on either side of the canal,” said an official.

Chennai Metrowater would be required to create infrastructure, including construction of pumping station, to transport 66 million litres of water daily to Poondi reservoir. The project is expected to be completed in 2 years.

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