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Chennai: Rs 400-crore stormwater drains project approved for city’s south

To provide a solution to flooding woes in Chennai’s low-lying areas, the Tamil Nadu government has approved a stormwater drains project, to be executed by the Greater Chennai Corporation and the state Public Welfare Department (PWD) at an estimated cost of Rs 400 crore.

The project was sanctioned after Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami visited Chennai localities hit by heavy rainfall during Cyclones Nivar and Burevi recently.

Addressing reporters on Friday, Chennai Corporation Commissioner G Prakash claimed that the city received 60 per cent more rainfall than average this year. “Due to Cyclone Nivar and Burevi, which brought heavy rainfall to the city, some pockets saw water stagnation. We have identified the locations that posed the greatest challenge to us for a permanent remedy. Based on the orders of CM Palaniswami, five perpendicular drainage channels will be built. Once this project is complete, South Chennai will be free from flooding forever,” he said.

Among the five drains, the Chennai Corporation will build three and the PWD two. The drains built by the corporation will come up at the stretch between Pallikaranai Marshland and the Radial road connecting the Buckingham canal. The next channel will be linked from Perumbakkam to Buckingham canal and Nookampalayam to Semmencheri slum tenement. The PWD will build the channel in Tharambur and Navalur.

Prakash said the SWD project is their top priority and its tender will be finalised soon.

Prakash added that apart from the above project, other critical locations have been identified that are prone to water stagnation and require technical intervention, like Baba Nagar in Villivakkam, RK Shanmugam Salai, KK Nagar, etc. They are getting inputs of IIT Madras engineers on designs to avoid flooding in these areas.

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Prakash also said an Integrated Storm Water Drain Project (ISWD) covering North Chennai, like Thiruvottiyur, Manali Madhavaram zones, will be launched by CM Palaniswami in 10 days.

In the wake of cyclones that brought heavy rainfall to Chennai, city roads have been battered with potholes, which, when water-logged, become a major risk to commuters.

In Ambattur, residents in many sectors have claimed that sewage getting mixed with rainwater is adding to their difficulties. Several of them claimed their borewells providing drinking water have also been contaminated by sewage water.

Two days ago, the Chennai civic body had come in for flak after a 56-year-old man lost his life allegedly in an accident caused by a water-logged pothole, near Liberty Bridge in Kodambakkam. Prakash, however, claimed the deceased, Narasimhan, had suffered a heart attack.