Pondy Beaches Restoration Project Starts With Artificial Reef Structure. The restoration project of Puducherry, which had lost its sand beaches with the construction of a port, has kickstarted with the successful immersion of an artificial reef structure, made of steel caisson with rock bottom, on the northern side.
The construction of the 900 tonne reef, measuring 125×100 metres, was immersed 2.5 metres below sea level on the northern side of the coast. The Chennai-based National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT), an autonomous body under the ministry of earth sciences, constructed and immersed India’s first wedge-shaped near shore artificial reef, at Puducherry coast.
As part of the Shoreline Management Plan for Puducherry, the ministry of earth sciences, NIOT, and the Puducherry government has designed a project estimated at Rs 65 crore. The project has two parts – beach restoration and shoreline stabilisation. As part of beach restoration, the sand which is stuck in and around the harbour will be removed, while a submerged reef will be built as part of the stabilisation process.
NIOT is also planning to launch the submerged structure to reduce wave activity into the shore. Mr Schiavina said that protection of the beaches are their primary concern and they have no options left other than the beach nourishment project to save the coastline.
The tourism department also hopes that the beach nourishment programme will attract more tourists to the Union Territory.
The pilot project will boost the number of domestic as well as international tourists. Along with this they will also take action to develop their airport. These developments will have surely a positive change in the economy and financial status of the state
The pilot project is estimated to cost Rs 65 crore and is jointly funded by the Puducherry government the ministry of earth sciences and NIOT.