CHENNAI: Has the Chennai Corporation finally found a solution to its water stagnation woes ?
The civic body for the first time has come up with an innovative two-phase technique for constructing new Storm Water Drains (SWDs) in Tondiarpet that will cost Rs 9 crore .
Most drains in stretches where the gradient is positive (upward slope) get clogged leaving roads in the vicinity flooded during monsoon. With Integrated Storm Water Drains not on the cards for at least the next five years, the Corporation was on the look out for an alternate solution following 2015 floods.
Ten months down the line, the authorities have come up with a plan along Elaya Street in Tondiarpet which was left inundated for weeks even after flood waters receded in surrounding areas.
The original SWD network in this road was designed to drain excess rainwater collected along the 1.5-km stretch into the sea through canals along Thiruvottiyur High Road. However, run-off water flowing through the SWD in this upward stretch started flowing in the reverse direction flooding the railway culvert in the south end. To handle this, the civic body installed a sump-motor arrangement.
A Corporation official said that to bridge the one-metre high difference between Elaya Street and Thiruvottiyur High Road, a sump (13-metre long and 4.5 metre deep) with a capacity to hold 2.34 lakh litres of water was constructed at T P Koil Street. Two high-powered motor pumps (25 HP) were connected to the sump operating in tandem. The pumps diverted the natural flow of run-off water against gravity and drained them into the sump which in turn was pumped out into canals in the higher elevation (in Thiruvottiyur High Road). The water reaches the exit point through North Beach Road.
Though there were several practical difficulties associated in maintaining the setup and ensuring uninterrupted power supply during the monsoons, the project is expected to serve its purpose till further comprehensive plans are made for core areas in the city.
“The project cost is `9 crore with the construction nearing completion and is expected to be operational next week,” said a senior official.