|Heavy rain causes flood in a street of Thu Duc District, HCM City. The city has decided to build three reservoirs at a cost of VND950 billion (US$42 million) to prevent flooding, but critics say they are not really needed and improving the sewerage system should be the priority. — Photo vnexpress.net
HCM CITY (VNS) — HCM City has decided to build three reservoirs at a cost of VND950 billion (US$42 million) to prevent flooding, but critics say they are not really needed and improving the sewerage system should be the priority.
The city plans a slew of urgent flood-control works in 2016-20 periods to mitigate flooding, which include dredging canals and building wastewater treatment plants.
They include the Go Dua, Khanh Hoi, and Bau Cat reservoirs in Districts Thu Duc, 4, and Tan Binh.
Nguyen Hoang Anh Dung, deputy director of the Centre of the Urban Flood Control Programme, said the reservoir at Bau Cat Park would be the city's first below ground, and is likely to have a capacity of 10,000 cubic metres.
"If it works well, more will be built."
But Ha Quang Long, a resident of Dong Den Street, Bau Cat, where the reservoir work is expected to start in the second quarter, said, "I think it is unnecessary to have a reservoir in the region as the upgraded Tan Hoa-Lo Gom canal helps water drain effectively.
"In fact, Bau Cat was flooded during the recent rains, but when the rain stopped, the water drained fast."
According to the Tan Binh People's Committee, roads and drainage system have been upgraded, which has helped considerably improve drainage and mitigate floods.
Spending money on the Bau Cat reservoir is wasteful and the city should instead use it for urgent flooding prevention projects elsewhere, it added.
Dr Pham Sanh, an urban transportation expert, said the city needs to first identify the causes of flooding to find effective flood-prevention measures.
The sewerage system, which is too old and decrepit, has not been upgraded, he said.
The downtown area does not have enough spare land for reservoirs, and building them in outlying districts like Binh Chanh and Hoc Mon would not necessarily prevent flooding in the city, he added. — VNS