Overall progress reaches 71.7 per cent
by Hana Namrouqa | Jan 22,2012 | 22:59
Workers on the Disi Water Conveyance Project lay a pipe along the desert highway on Thursday (Photo by Hana Namrouqa)

MUDAWARA/MAAN — Despite several incidents that delayed progress of the Disi Water Conveyance Project, officials on Thursday said the water mega-venture will be completed on its due date early next year.

Seventy-one per cent of the project, designed to provide Amman with 110 million cubic metres (mcm) annually, is completed, according to project officials.

“Overall progress of the Disi project reached 71.7 per cent. The planned progress by this time should have been around 80 per cent, but security issues among other non-project related reasons delayed implementation,” said Kevork Msrlian, contact manager at the Sweden-based SWECO company, which is supervising the construction of the project for the Ministry of Water and Irrigation.

He made the remarks during a tour of Disi project work sites on Thursday organised by the Ministry of Water and Irrigation, during which Minister of Water and Irrigation Musa Jamaani and other officials checked on the progress.

Msrlian noted that the overall progress percentage includes completion of engineering blueprints, procurement of materials and construction among other elements.

“Fifty-eight per cent of the project construction has been completed, while the planned percentage by this time should have been 73 per cent. Engineering and procurement measures are progressing according to schedule,” Msrlian said.

Work on the Disi project was halted several times last year due to attacks against project workers in the south. Construction of a major part of the project was suspended for over a month after a shooting incident targeted Disi project engineers and vehicles in September last year.

Mechanical and construction work on the project resumed in early December last year after authorities introduced security measures to protect teams operating in the southern region between Al Hassa and Mudawwara on the Jordanian-Saudi border.

“Maintaining a secure site, satisfying the local residents’ need for employment, frequent closure of roads leading to work sites due to protests and the complexity of pipe construction in the city section are among the main challenges that necessitate close attention and follow-up by the ministry,” Msrlian said.

He noted that 95 patrols from the Royal Badia Forces were deployed for the protection of workers.

Being carried out on a build-operate-transfer basis and implemented by the Turkish company GAMA, the Disi project seeks to provide the capital with much-needed water via pipeline, which starts at the ancient Disi aquifer in southern Jordan and ends in Amman, passing through several water stations in Maan, Tafileh, Karak and Madaba.

Under the Disi project, which started in 2007, 64 wells are being drilled, 55 of which will be used for the generation of water, while nine will serve as piezometer wells to measure the elevation of water.

“The piezometer wells have been drilled, 13 production wells were completed, four wells are nearing completion and another two are under construction,” Msrlian noted.

Twenty-five sub-contractors are working on the project, 20 of them local contractors, he said, highlighting that the project’s workforce stands at 4,579 personnel, 60 per cent of them Jordanians.