GEORGE TOWN, Aug 10 – The Penang state government is reviewing a proposal to build an underground reservoir such as the one in Bangkok, Thailand which is capable of accommodating 3,785 cubic metres of rainwater in efforts to tackle flooding in the state.
State Public Works Committee, Utility and Flood Mitigation Committee chairman Zairil Khir Johari said through the technology, rainwater would be “filled up” as much as possible into the tank, and then “swallowed” slowly through pumps that will then drain water into the river.
This project is interesting not only in flood mitigation but also in terms of aesthetics and recreation as the park can also be used by the public when it does not rain,” he said when winding up the debate on the address of Penang Yang Dipertua Negri Tun Abdul Rahman Abbas at the State Legislative Assembly sitting here yesterday.
However, Zairil said a comprehensive study should be carried out. It should include reviewing the feasibility of the technology as a condition for future development as the the cost of building the underground tank is high.
“I visited Bangkok recently and was given a briefing on the flood mitigation projects in the city including the use of underground reservoir tank at an area of 4.45ha at the Centenary Park, Chulalongkorn University. The construction cost of the project was more than RM300 million,” he said.
He said that the state government approved a RM9.6 million allocation for the Alma reservoir project which could accommodate 50 years of ARI (average recurrence interval) which in turn was expected to reduce 50% of the downstream water.
Meanwhile, Zairil said the delay in delivering the Mengkuang Dam at Bukit Mertajam to the state government was due to the expansion of the dam which will end on Nov 16 next year.
He said all the “disabilities” that had taken place during the period including problematic slopes, maintenance work and other repairs were under the responsibility of the Energy, Green Technology and Water Ministry, which was in the midst of carrying out repairs. He said the expansion of the Mengkuang Dam which began in August 2011 was to have been completed in July 2016. — Bernama