two underground mega drains to Control floods in Colombo

Published : 9:00 am  May 31, 2018 | No comments so far |  |  (376) reads | 

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Rs.5.8 bn

 

  • The project cost USD 321 million of which USD 214 million was provided by the World Bank
  • Colombo is situated in the downstream of the Kelani River and is vulnerable to flood threat as it’s a low level area 
  • construction of the pump house in Nagalan veediya had been already started while construction of Kolonnawa and Ambatale to initiate within the year

 

By Thilanka Kanakarathna

The Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development is set to invest Rs. 5,800 million in a mega flood control project in Colombo.   


The project, highest investment to be made since the Dutch era, was taken up by the China Petroleum Pipeline Engineering Co., Ltd. The company will construct two mega underground storm water tunnels for the city.   


The 750 meter-long, 3 meter wide first tunnel will be constructed parallel to Mutwal tunnel that will carry the additional water flow in Malalasekara Mawatha, BMICH, Independence Square, Colombo 7 and Colombo North. 

 
The Second tunnel 1.2km-long, 3meter wide is expected to be constructed from Torrington towards seas off Bambalapitiya under Bauddhaloka Mawatha.   


Minister Champika Ranawaka said the project cost USD 321 million of which USD 214 million was provided by the World Bank.   


The high-tech state of art machine which is use to drill the tunnel will concrete the surface at the same time preventing any water leaks.   


Accordingly, the ministry will conduct the project after acquiring the land while obtaining residents consent and providing them compensation for their losses.   


Minister said that City of Colombo is situated in the downstream of the Kelani River and is vulnerable to flood threat as it’s a low level area.   


CITY-DM-4-3Therefore minister pointed out with the recent changes in the weather patterns it is essential to streamline the receding additional water flow.   


Minister explained that the city’s water systems, drainage systems and the sewerage systems should maintain properly in order to uplift the city as a developed one.   


He further said that it had been a challenge to carry out underground constructions as there are telephone and electricity lines beneath the ground.   


He also said that the authorities had to face social and environmental issues when conducting such projects.   


However, while achieving such goals he said his ministry was able to construct such systems in the middle of Colombo and another system is building across the Kynsey Road which is to be ended at the year end and will help to control flood around Borella Cemetery area.   


Minister also said that construction of the pump house in Nagalan veediya had been already started while construction of Kolonnawa and Ambatale to initiate within the year.   


He said with those pump houses the additional water flow would be pumped back to river reducing the floods in the area.   


Further, he said that with the support of the Irrigation Department several pumps have been imported to pump the water to river in case of major flood situation.   


Accordingly Megapolis is hoping to renovate the Wellawatte Canal to carry the additional water towards the sea.   


Megapolis had also introduced a multipurpose project to resolve the Colombo’s drinking water issue using Kelani River and to use it as a mode of transport.  The project is yet to receive the Cabinet approval and expressed this method would be a successful solution to control the flood situation in Colombo while the additional water flow of Kelani River will be diverted to dry zones.