Melamchi project: Tunnel works push back deadline further

- Anup Ojha, Kathmandu

Nov 10, 2017-

The protracted the Melamachi Water Supply Project (MWSP) has stumbled into another roadblock, forcing the much-anticipated project to extend its completion deadline until March next year.

The MWSP had said it would pump water from Melamchi River into the Valley by Dashain. However, the project has postponed its completion date until March 26, 2018 citing  a technical issue. The project was earlier scheduled to complete the tunnel works in September 2016. 

Executive Director at the MWSDP Ramkanta Duwadi said they were down to the final 1.2km stretch of the total 27.5km tunnel works. “We are doing everything in our power to complete the tunnel works,” he said, adding that the tunnel digging was progressing at a rate of around 18 metres a day. 

Then suddenly workers started facing difficulties while taking on the remaining work in a “very technical” stetch due to the low presence of oxygen, Duwadi explained. 

“It would be another two months before we get over the remaining task, including tunnel invert lining,” he said. 

Duwadi, however, added that the project’s main contractor, Cooperativa Muratori e Cementisti di Ravenna, had made a commitment to complete the task by the extended deadline. The Italian company was awarded the tunnel digging contract in July 2013.

During a field visit to the MDWP this August, Prime Minister Sher Bahadur 

Deuba had directed the authorities to expedite works to complete the project in stipulated time.

Once the tunnel works are completed, it would take just two days to train water from Ambathan Muhan in Helambu down 27.5 metres to Sundarijal, according to project officials. The MWSP has constructed nine service reservoir tanks (SRTS) in Kathmandu Valley for the water distribution.

Once completed, the project, being developed with support from the Asian Development Bank (ADB), will pump 170 million litres of water per day into the Valley.

Published: 10-11-2017 07:40

User's Feedback

Click here for your comments

Comment via Facebook

Don't have facebook account? Use this form to comment