The contract for the construction of a dam at Bagatelle will be allocated in June this year. Preliminary bids received on March 7 are presently being looked at by an Evaluation Committee.
A source told NEWSNOW yesterday that after the technical evaluation, a committee chaired by a representative of the State Law Office (SLO) will conduct negotiations with the potential bidder. It is expected the contract will be awarded in June and the work will start in November. The dam is expected to be completed in 2014.
The Bagatelle Dam is a major project to address water shortages in the regions of Port Louis and lower Plaines Wilhems, including Quatre Bornes, Rose Hill and Beau Bassin. The dam, costing some Rs2.6 billion, will cover 140ha of land and will be built on the Terre Rouge River.
It will have a storage capacity of 14 million cubic metres of water. The new dam will be used to mobilise additional resources for water and ensure a regular supply of drinking water in the areas mentioned until 2050.
The dam will also help increase water reserves for irrigation purposes. The Bagatelle project was initiated in 2000. A feasibility study was submitted in August 2003 identifying the site for the construction of a 16 million metre cube dam.
However, in April 2004, the then government decided that the dam site should be reviewed as the proposed site was partly on prime private land. In June 2004, the feasibility study was undertaken solely on SLDC land and was completed in April 2006.
In June 2006, government’s approval was obtained to proceed with the detailed design of the dam on the new revisited site.
Following the visit of the prime minister to China in November 2006, the seventh session of the Sino Mauritian Joint Commission agreed in May 2007 to consider funding the Bagatelle Dam project.