Chennai Buzz: Monsoon vulnerability | Nod to four smart city projects | Chennai Central turns green…and more

CHENNAI WEEKLY NEWS ROUND-UP

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Chennai central to install solar panels for power. image Source: Wikimedia commons

37 Chennai areas listed as highly vulnerable to north east monsoon

With the onset of the north east monsoon expected soon, the Tamil Nadu Government has identified 321 areas across 14 districts of the State as ‘highly vulnerable’, out of which 37 are in Chennai. Water stagnation in these areas are expected to be above 5 feet. Other districts with a concentration of highly vulnerable areas are Kancheepuram (84), the Nilgiris (68), Cuddalore (37), Thiruvallur (29), Kanyakumari (22) and Nagapattinam (21). According to the report cited above, there are 3,055 vulnerable locations in all in the 14 districts, out of which 306 are in Chennai. 

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An empirical observation of a few neighbourhoods in Chennai reveals that there is a lot to be done and the Greater Chennai Corporation must take immediate steps if the city is to be made monsoon-ready.

Meanwhile, it has been reported that the National Centre for Coastal Research (NCCR) has developed a Chennai Flood Warning System, which can forecast flooding five days to a week in advance. The system, it is said, will be able to forecast flooding in any locality, ward, street or even building in the city along with evacuation routes, thereby giving authorities sufficient time to take suitable action and chart an evacuation plan if necessary.

Source:  The New Indian Express  | Citizen Matters | Gadgets Now

Sports facilities in public places for elite few only

A park built on a open space in Virugambakkam by the civic agency has now become accessible only to a few among the elite, throwing up fundamental questions over the use of public space by all. The indoor badminton stadium on the Chennai Corporation Park adjacent to a housing complex for IAS and IPS officers in the area now allows access only to members, as indicated in a board just outside. 

The park was intended to be for common use by residents in any part of the city and has a fountain, a rest area and a shuttle court. However, several amenities have now been restricted to use by a select group. This also seems to be the practice in several other sports facilities across the city, in Adyar, Annanagar and T Nagar.

Source: The Times of India

Smaller on-site composting site in public spaces to ease waste processing

With 33 micro compost centres in Avadi, Tiruverkadu and Poonamallee set up over the last six months, the Commissionerate of Municipal Administration (CMA)  is looking at a decentralized approach to solid waste management, so as to reduce the pressure on dumpyards and saving transportation costs.  Each of these compost centres has the capacity to convert up to 5 tonnes of bio degradable waste into manure. The CMA also plans to set up on-site composting units of less than one tonne capacity in public spaces. However, collection of waste and segregation at source continue to be a challenge in some municipalities, Avadi in particular. 

Source: The Hindu

24X7 piped water supply for T Nagar as part of the smart city project

Four projects worth Rs 258 crores were cleared in the board meeting of Chennai Smart City Ltd held last week. The key highlight is round-the-clock piped water supply to around 49000 households in T Nagar area, which will eliminate the need for tanker supply. 

Other projects sanctioned include a sky walk between the Mambalam station and T Nagar bus stand, construction of missing links in the storm water drains in T Nagar, and a bio gas plant to be fuelled by water hyacinth removed from the city’s water bodies.

Source:  The Times of India

Chennai Corporation to lengthen storm water drains in North Chennai

Chennai Corporation  has revised the design for the integrated storm water project in North Chennai along Kosasthalai river. The new design will ensure that the drains handle 70 mm of rainfall an hour. The civic body has reduced the maximum width of the drains in the project from 3 metres to 2 metres.

The new design of drains and canals will also prevent flooding in many neighbourhoods of Tiruvottiyur, Manali, Madhavaram and seven wards of Ambattur zone.

Source:  The Hindu

Chennai Central gets Green Building Certification

Chennai Central became the first station in Southern Railway to be awarded the Green Building Certification. The Indian Green Building Council (IGBC), instituted by the Confederation of Indian Industry, awarded the station after it incorporated several features and concepts required for such certification.

The railway green building projects include facilities like 100% LED lighting fixtures, installation of 5-star rated fans, solar energy, solar water heaters and segregation of waste at source along with waste recycling. Chennai Central has also implemented smart passenger information systems and services.

Source:  The Hindu

Two new sub stations in Chennai to improve quality of power supply

Along with two new substations at Chennai Central and Porur, the Chief Minister opened 17 new substations of various capacities in the state to improve power quality. The Chennai sub stations will have a capacity of 230 Kv each.

The urban sub stations are gas insulated switch gear-based and require relatively low maintenance. The areas where the sub stations will be installed faced challenges of voltage fluctuations and power losses, which are now expected to be resolved.

Source:  The Times of India

[Compiled by Sandhya Raju]