15,000 drinking water connections to be provided before year ends

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Coimbatore: The city corporation is planning to provide 15,000 drinking water connections before the end of the year under the 24/7 drinking water scheme.

Though DMK opposed the project when it was in opposition, as the new government has given the go-ahead, the project will be sped up, a corporation official said.

While around 600 connections have been provided in Jayaram Nagar in Telungupalayam where the pilot project was executed, RS Puram could be the next place to be covered.

The civic body had signed an agreement with French company Suez in 2018 to supply round the clock drinking water to 60 wards in the old city. As many as 1.5 lakh connections need to be replaced with new meters and pipeline at a cost of Rs 2,975 crore.

As per the agreement, the company has to complete the project by 2023 and carry out operation and maintenance for 21 years. As the project is racing against time for completion, officials are working overtime to meet the deadline. “We are already behind schedule. By now, we should have provided 30,000 connections. But we can give only 15,000 connections by the end of this year,” said an official with the project team.

The pandemic situation and change of guard in the state government stalled the progress of the project, the official said. “However, we are confident of meeting deadline.”

The project involves laying of 75km new feeder mainline and 1,744km of drinking water distribution lines, independent engineering-cum-project management consultant Gopalakrishnan Padmanabhan told TOI. “Of the 75km feed mainlines, 12.5km has been laid. Of the 1,744km distribution lines, 251km has been laid.”

Residents of Jayaram Nagar are satisfied with the quantity of water supplied as well as pressure, said M Jagadeewaran of Brindavan Garden in Jayaram Nagar. “We are happy with the uninterrupted power supply as we can get water at our convenience. Earlier, we could not leave the house as we did not know when water would be supplied. I would not have constructed a sump had the project was implemented 10 years ago. Water pressure is now adequate to store water directly in the tank on the terrace,” he said.

T Latha of Telungupalayam Main Road said that although she is happy with the water supply, she is concerned about the tariff, which is yet to be announced. She is using bore water for household uses, while keeping the corporation water for drinking and cooking.

Residents need not worry about tariff as the civic body will continue to follow the old tariff, the corporation official said. “Only that charges would be levied based on meter reading.”

Timeline

2008- Consultant appointed to prepare report

2011- Report submitted to state government

2013- Central government approves it

2014 – State government suggests public-private partnership

2017- Letter of acceptance given to Suez

2018 – Corporation signs agreement with Suez

2019- Construction works commence

2023- Project deadline

Funding

Construction work- Rs 646.71 crore

· Govt of India – Rs 166.99 crore

· Govt of TN – Rs 101.21 crore

· Concessionaire – Rs 129.34 crore

· Tamil Nadu Infrastructure Development Board- Rs 66.8 crore

· Coimbatore corporation – Rs 182.37 (Rs 150.73 from smart city fund and 31.64 crore from own fund)

Operation and maintenance (21 years)– Rs 2,328.45 crore

Frequently Asked Questions

1 Do consumers need to pay anything extra for the connection?

There is no need to pay any extra money. Meter and required pipe will be replaced without any cost

2 Does the corporation have adequate water sources for uninterrupted water supply?

The civic body gets 225 million litres a day (MLD) water from Siruvani, Pillur, Bhavani and Aliyar reservoirs. As per the estimated population of 2044, an additional 318 MLD will be obtained through the Pillur III project, which is under progress


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