Bangladesh is a country of rivers and canals. Almost all major cities in the country have been developed on the banks of rivers and canals that fly through the cities. Narayanganj which was once called the Dundee of the East, is not an exception to this. The city has been blessed with rivers and canals, which have made it one of the oldest and busiest river ports in Bangladesh. But the unfortunate fact is that most of these canals have either dried out or gone extinct because of population and pollution. However, the good news is that our government has focused on this sector and has taken initiatives to restore the canals. The Baburail canal of Narayanganj is one such example that was about to go extinct, whereas the canal has significance in the trade and commerce of Narayanganj. The significance and beauty of this canal are that it connects the city with diverse landscapes in the region as well as the two major rivers (the Dhaleswari and the Shitoloykha) that are flowing through Narayanganj. However, with the passage of time, silt, encroachment, and a waste dump from the surrounding area caused the canal to become increasingly narrow and eventually, it faded away by losing its connection between the said rivers. When a waterway dies, it not only alters the landscape but also disrupts the delicate biological balance of the surrounding environment. However, during the restoration, stress has been applied to the design so that the canal not only gets rejuvenation but also turns into a place rather than a mere space.
The canal is, locally, known as the ‘Baburail & Jhelepara Bangla Bazaar Canal’. It is 2.8 kilometers long and 15 to 30 meters wide at various places, between the Shitalakshya River to the east and the Dhaleshwari River towards the west. While connected with the said rivers, the canal flows east to west during the monsoon and west to east during the lean period. A lake named ‘Jimkhana’ is also connected perpendicularly to the canal and is approximately 405 meters long and 75 meters wide.
Once we got involved with this project, our core mindset was “Think globally, act locally.” With this mindset, our approach was towards a visionary solution that would meet local needs and aspirations. Prior to the design phase, we had several extensive feasibility studies, which include (i) Environmental Impact Assessment, (ii) Social Impact Assessment, and (iii) Resettlement Action Plan (iv) Traffic Assessment Impact (v) Environment Impact Assessment Apart from these, we also had a precise (i) Theoretical Framework (ii) Restoration Strategy (iii) Methods (iv) Techniques, etc. that had made the project a well-executed one.
Development Baburail Canal,Narayanganj
Narayanganj City Corporation
Ar. Md. Ishtiaque Zahir
Ar. Md. Iqbal Habib
Ar. Mehedi Hasan
Md. Tofazzel Hossain
Md . Aynal Gazi
Md. Maksudur Rahman
Dr. J.C Saha
Social Development Specialist:
Mr.Mohidul Haq Khan
Md. Izazul Haq
Environmental & Drainage Engineer:
For further information about the project Baburail Canal,Narayanganj