Greater Chennai Corporation adopts localised solutions for flood mitigation

Three IAS officers with engineering backgrounds have been posted as Regional Deputy Commissioners; engineers of the civic body led by them have been sorting out issues arising in the areas then and there

Published - November 13, 2022 08:47 pm IST - CHENNAI

Workers of the Greater Chennai Corporation using gravel to fill the potholes on Canal Road in Sathangadu on Sunday.

Workers of the Greater Chennai Corporation using gravel to fill the potholes on Canal Road in Sathangadu on Sunday. | Photo Credit: B. JOTHI RAMALINGAM

The Greater Chennai Corporation (GCC) has started adopting localised solutions for resolving issues of waterlogging during the northeast monsoon.

After the onset of the monsoon, there were a number of places where the civic engineers have been advised to go for localised solutions, Corporation Commissioner Gagandeep Singh Bedi said.

“For example, after residents and motorists complained about waterlogging in Tamil Salai at Egmore in front of Mathsya Hotel during the previous spell of rain, engineers installed Hume Pipes to cross the water from the other side to the major drain,” he said. It was set up overnight by the team consisting of Regional Deputy Commissioner, North, Sivaguru Prabhakaran and a zonal officer. This stopped the water flow over there, he added.

Similarly, in Pallavan Salai, Kolathur, there is an old brick drain structure which had actually collapsed and its flow was obstructed. As an immediate solution, the Corporation, instead of constructing a new drain, has put up a precast drain structure in the last two days, which will be completed by tomorrow and that should ease out the water flow in that location, said an official.

In zone 4, Tondiarpet, in a number of drains which were entering Buckingham Canal, shutters along with the pumping of water have been introduced to prevent the water from flowing back into the local habitations, and at the same time, pumping will ensure the rainwater is drainer quickly, officials said.

In the case of flooding in Aziz Nagar and Subramaniapuram, the engineers changed the entire watershed from the Adyar to the Cooum in a bid to offer localised solutions. “Water from Aziz Nagar and Subramaniapuram was diverted to Trustpuram Canal, which ultimately goes to the Cooum. Otherwise, the water originally used to go to Mambalam Canal and then to the Adyar. This has given relief to the T. Nagar areas and critical habitations,” an official said.

Residents in Kolathur had demanded that the Corporation implement work to mitigate waterlogging in areas such as G.K.M. Colony. In Kolathur, steps to even out the intensity of water flow gave a big relief to 70 Feet Road, which usually gets flooded.

Even in Ripon Buildings area, the water was diverted to the Buckingham Canal through the local railway station area, and the GCC also put up additional pumps and constructed sumps to mitigate flooding in the event of heavy rainfall.

Another example of the localised solution which has been successful this monsoon is opposite the Police Commissioner Office on Poonamallee High Road. “In a bid to divert the water to Cooum, the Corporation, Highways and Railways coordinated to install huge precast drains and a huge sump inside St. Andrews Church premises and pumped water directly to the Cooum through pipes. That gave relief to the area around the Egmore railway station, officials said.

Engineers of the Corporation, led by the three IAS officers with engineering backgrounds, who have been posted as Regional Deputy Commissioners, have used localised solutions to sort out issues then and there.

“We also are further examining more localised solutions for other waterlogging problems wherever they are reported. Currently, the focus is primarily on preventing waterlogging on major roads to prevent any disruption of traffic flow in the city during the rain. Work on cleaning silt catch pits along more than 1,400 arterial roads is expected to resume this week and will be completed by this week,” an official said.

In the flood-prone Seethammal colony, the water was flowing through Ranga Road. The water was diverted through spread out waterways, which were used after IIT-Madras vet their design. Now, the area has no waterlogging. Residents have been requested to call 1913 to report civic issues caused by waterlogging during the northeast monsoon.

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