By Hana Namrouqa

AMMAN – After being delayed by security concerns, Disi Water Conveyance Project contractors are racing to meet its January 2013 deadline.

Work on the mega-project, which entails the construction of a 325-kilometre pipeline to convey water from the ancient Disi aquifer in southern Jordan to Amman, is 40 per cent complete, according to sources at GAMA, the Turkish company carrying out the project.

However, the project is “slightly behind schedule” after a dispute over contracts resulted in the death of two Disi project workers, spurring work to be suspended for two weeks.

“There was a slight delay in the implementation of the project, but a catch-up programme was drafted to speed up work in order to meet our schedule,” a GAMA source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told The Jordan Times yesterday.

Under the plan, expedited work is expected bring the mega-project back on track by April in order to meet the target completion date of early 2013.

Around 23 wells at different depths in the well field in Dbeideb in the south of the country are currently being drilled, with teams expected to complete two wells this month, according to the source.

“Over the past year, our teams completed drilling eight piezometer wells and two production wells,” the source noted.

Under the Disi project, 64 wells will be drilled, 55 of which will be used for the generation of water and nine wells to serve as piezometer wells to measure the elevation of water.

Forty-six of the 55 water generation wells will be used for water extraction, while the remaining nine wells will be “on standby” and only used in cases of emergency, according to Disi Water Company (DIWACO).

Water generation wells will be dug at a depth of 600-700 metres, while the piezometer wells will be dug at a depth of 400 metres, according to DIWACO officials, who expect the wells to generate water for a minimum of 50 years.

Being carried out on a build-operate-transfer basis, the Disi project will transfer water via a pipeline, which will pass through several water stations, from Maan-Tafileh-Karak-Madaba and finally to Amman.

Around 340 kilometres of pipes are needed to complete the project, according to the source, who highlighted that 280 kilometres of pipes have so far arrived in Jordan from Turkey.

“Transference of the project’s pipes is expected to be completed by the end of April,” the source noted.

The company is currently installing 85 kilometres of pipes at different locations on the project’s route, including Mudawara, Hessa and Amman on the Queen Alia International Airport road and Abu Alanda.