Govt. nod sought for revised plan to build barrage across the Palar

About 750 tmcft of the Palar water flowed into the sea between October 2021 and February 2022.

About 750 tmcft of the Palar water flowed into the sea between October 2021 and February 2022. | Photo Credit: S.R. RAGHUNATHAN

The Water Resources Department has revised the design and estimate submitted last year for the construction of a barrage across the river near Udayambakkam-Padalam. The department has sought the government’s approval for the estimate which was revised in view of the record flow in the river last year.

The water flow touched 1.65 lakh cusecs (cubic feet per second) last year. Nearly 175 thousand million cubic feet (tmcft) of the Palar water drained into the sea between mid-October 2021 and mid-February 2022.

According to the revised design, the barrage would have a maximum height of five metres and store up to 700 mcft of water. Besides recharging about 1,250 open and tube wells, the barrage would irrigate about 7,740 hectares of land.

Once the ₹336-crore barrage is constructed, water can be stored for a distance of 4.5 km in the river bed upstream. Moreover, surplus water would be diverted to seven waterbodies such as Pallipattu, Vallipuram and Pallavankulam. Budur and Puliparakoil would be among the 23 villages that would benefit from this. “We decided to construct a barrage to minimise silt accumulation and also regulate flow during flash floods,” said an official.

Officials said many villagers now travelled through Mamandur or through East Coast Road to reach sugarcane and paddy mills in Madurantakam taluk. There are plans to build a 7.50-metre wide bridge over the barrage to help residents avoid detours. The new structure would be developed as a recreational spot.

Feasibility study

The department is mulling the feasibility of laying a pipeline to convey stored water in the Palar river to Chembarambakkam lake. Water can be distributed to Chennai residents and new municipal corporations like Avadi and Tambaram.

Officials said there were plans to build a series of check dams across the Palar to tap surplus water that otherwise drains into the sea. Detailed project report has been submitted to convert a dyke in Palur into a check dam to store surface water.

Similarly, the department has submitted projects to build check dams in three locations of Nallathur, Vengudi and Venkatapuram and is awaiting State government’s approval. However, the proposal to convert Vayalar check dam into a barrage had been dropped as raising the height of storage structure would affect the neighbouring villages.

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Printable version | Jun 26, 2022 6:23:50 pm |