Chennai

On Islands Grounds and the Cooum

Do you know that Island Grounds owes its name to the Cooum?

Before joining the Bay of Bengal, the Cooum forks into two gnarled arms, both of which surround a vast parcel of land, known as Island Grounds. Holding it in its arms, the Cooum has literally isolated it from the rest of the landscape.

The northern arm of the river, which also has north Buckingham canal joining it, travels from the new campus of Madras Medical College that once housed the Central prison and along the Muthuswamy bridge. The southern arm travels via Chintadripet and Sivananda Salai and joins the sea near Napier bridge.

The Water Resources Department (WRD) had leased a portion of the Island Grounds to the Tourism Department for 99 years since 1986 so that it could host trade fairs. The remaining land was allotted to the Department of Defence, say officials of WRD.



Madras Week: Thus Spake Cooum

>Celebrating Madras Week

Over years, Chennai’s own river, the banks on which Madras arose, 376 years ago next week, has meandered on, stoic in the face of the assaults on it.

>Madras thrived on her banks

A group of history enthusiasts has brought a fresh perspective to the image of the river.

>The scene of great battles

A city grew on the banks of the Cooum, but did you know that they have been sites of the clash of civilisations?

>For them, Cooum is not synonymous with sewer

The Cooum, as strange as it might sound to some, still remains a lifeline to many villages in Tiruvallur district.

>Cooum snippets

In the first-person account that follows, one R. Premsingh writes, “I wish to draw the attention of the Corporation authorities to the stinking smell emitted by the Cooum river.”

>Cooum: Madras' engine of growth

Nearly everything that was and is notable in the city took root along my banks, from the houses of the powerful to the centres of commerce

>Staving off the sewage threat in Cooum

Chennai Metrowater seems to be trying to actualise the big dream of cleaning Cooum river through small steps.

>What's in a name?

A group of history enthusiasts has brought a fresh perspective to the image of the river.

>When crocodiles swam free in Cooum

If you walked by the Cooum about a 100 years ago, you may just have spotted the Cooum crocodile

>Cooum: High tide of artistic expression

From cinemas and bookstores to theatre performances and architectural marvels, I have witnessed this great city reaching new creative heights over many decades.

>Chennai Corporation to play a key role in Cooum makeover

Following a resolution by the Chennai Corporation Council this summer, the civic body is set to do a study on the restoration of heritage landscape along the Cooum river.

>On Islands Grounds and the Cooum

Do you know that Island Grounds owes its name to the Cooum?

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Printable version | Oct 18, 2021 3:27:15 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/chennai-island-grounds/article7554869.ece

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