ISLAMABAD          -       After failing to implement existing rain-harvesting bylaws in the capital, the city managers are now going to engage a new consultant to develop a rain harvesting system for Islamabad.

The decision has come in a meeting at CDA in which it has decided to engage a consultant to improve rainwater storage facility across the city. Rainwater normally goes waste but with this initiative there will be a possibility to recharge ground water and use for horticulture purposes.

Rainwater harvesting is the process of collection and storage of rainwater from rooftops and land runoff through a system of pipes and tanks in a building and then using it as an alternative or complementary source to main water.

As per the section 4.1.2 of the Islamabad Residential Sector Zoning (Building Control) Regulations 2005 of CDA, the rainwater harvesting system is mandatory in housing units constructed over a size of 400 square yards and above.

The said clause was included in building bylaws about a decade ago due to water scarcity in the city and it was decided to compel citizens to include rainwater harvesting system in their houses.

This building bylaw was not only for new constructions but it was decided to force citizens who have already constructed their houses to include rain harvesting system. For new houses, it was made mandatory and the approval of building plans have been linked with fulfilment of the said requirement.

However, the reliable sources informed that the aforementioned clause is being neglected by the Building Control Section (BCS). They informed that people who are constructing their houses show rain harvesting system in their building plans in papers but on ground situation is quite different as very limited houses have the said system.

On the other side, there was no serious effort done by BCS to enforce the said bylaw in existing houses and it is evident from the fact that in 2017, a survey regarding rainwater harvesting system in residential units was started but same could not be completed besides passage of more than three years.  

Now, instead of effectively implementing said building bylaw, the authority is going to engage another consultant on public expense just to waste more time and resources on paper work.

According to a press release issued on Tuesday, CDA has decided to engage consultant for two projects. The services of consultant would be hired for development of parking plazas in Islamabad and development of project to clean nullah and construction of rain water facilities in the city.