Dam to eradicate water problems

The water supply crisis that has plagued residents in Warden and Ezenzeleni will soon be a thing of the past.

This follows the construction of the Cornelis River Dam to provide water to residents.

Warden falls under the governance of the Phumelela Local Municipality.

The project to build the dam, which cost R253 million, was undertaken by the Department of Water and Sanitation.

After construction work commenced had in October 2011, the department announced completion on 8 July.

The dam wall is 205 m high and the storage capacity, at a spillway level of 4,5 million cubic metres, is set to benefit 2 690 households.

Warden has a population of approximately 11 000.

This town in the Free State province of South Africa on the N3 highway between Johannesburg and Durban.

Dr Tseliso Ntili, provincial head of the department, said the concrete spillway was designed to safely accommodate the regional maximum flood level without overtopping the non-overspill crest when the dam is at full capacity.

The surface area of the dam at full supply level is 98 ha.

“The dam was built to ensure a sustainable and long-term solution for the water supply problems that have been plaguing residents of Warden and Ezenzeleni,” Ntili said.

“The dam at Warden is badly silted and has no capacity for raw water storage.

“It was also posing a risk of contamination from a nearby communal kraal.”

According to Ntili, the water supply problem was due to unprecedented residential development.

“The high migration of rural to urban, and the changing pattern of water usage due to the introduction of water-borne sewerage systems under the bucket eradication programme, places additional stress on the existing infrastructure and resources.”

Ntili said the Phumelela Municipality had established the need to initiate sustain­able raw water resources due to the unreliability of the current water resources.