Addis Ready to Revitalize its Rivers


Improvements of bridges and other structures also part of 14 river project




Addis Ababa River & Riversides Development Project Office has selected six rivers and their associated infrastructures to be rehabilitated at a cost of 31 million Br.

The rivers are located in five districts: Arada, Kirkos , Yeka, Addis Ketema and Lideta. Kebena River, in Kasanchis, will undergo a 14.4 million Br improvement. Shankela river located in Addis Ketema is to be restored at a cost of 2.3 million Br while a budget of 12.5 million Br has been allocated for another river, Jammo. This project also includes two rivers, Yemariam and Galagla or Gefare , which will be rehabilitated at a cost of 900,000 Br each.

“These sites have priority among similar 14 projects due to being at a critical stage. They are in desperate need of rehabilitation and clean up,” said Debela Beru, Deputy Head of the office. The budget for such projects is provided by the City government’s finance bureau.

The project office was established last year. It was formed to integrate the development of rivers, and to implement tasks to overcome soil erosion along the banks of rivers and flood exposed areas of the city. The project will include rivers such as Kebena, Banche Yeketu, Kortame, Bulbula and Lequ, which cover around 600km within the city limits. Moreover, it also includes development of parks and public spaces across every administrative level – city, district and Wereda.

The initial plan was to launch the project after a detailed study by Addis Abeba University, at a cost of 34 million Br. The study uncovered five thematic areas including socio-economic aspects and issues related with pollution. It was expected that the office would receive the full report next month, but it was delayed.

In the next five to ten years, the city plans to open five parks along the rivers, and develop 10km of bicycle paths and walkways. Trees, predominantly indigenous, will be planted along the sides. Plots will also be available for urban agriculture activities. This project will transform close to 50 hectares of land and utilize it for income-generating activities. Moreover, a data center about the rivers’ status, covering many aspects, will be commissioned.

The project execution will begin with the river that extends from Orma Garadge/Sheraton Hotel to Afencho Ber and beyond, the river that extends from the centre of the city out towards Entoto. This river covers 2.8km and 39ha of land. This integrated development will be implemented at a cost of 238 million Br. The city plans to complete 50pc of its vision by the end of this year.

The recent rehabilitation projects on the six rivers will start soon after a contractor is hired. Last week, the office floated a bid for the construction of structures for riversides and bridges.

The office mandated to uplift the city’s beauty view was established last year with five-year term to complete the projects. The work of cleaning up the city will be undertaken in line with the tenth Master Plan.



By BEZAWIT ADMASU
FORTUNE STAFF WRITER

Published on Nov 22,2016 [ Vol 17 ,No 864]


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