Art & Culture

Namma Oora Neeru: A water walk around Hesarghatta reservoir

Namma Oora Neeru - a water walk around the Hesarghatta reservoir will give you some insights as to how it was the main source of water supply to Bangalore until the 80s

A water walk around Hesarghatta reservoir Photo: GoogleA water walk around Hesarghatta reservoir Photo: Google

Bangalore’s tryst with water can be
compared to the travails of bhagiratha. For centuries kings and administrators created lakes, wells and tanks to source water for the city. Even during the time of the British administration, a series of man-made water tanks were the solution to the city’s water woes. So, this weekend go on a heritage water walk in Bangalore and trace the relationship between the city and its water sources. Hesarghatta, which is 13 miles northeast of Bangalore, today, is more famous for the dance school, Nrityagram or the Taj Kuteeram, but it was the main source of water supply to Bangalore until the 80s. An old tank bund on the Arkavathi River had been built during the medieval times and was the source for irrigation of the area.

It was comprehensively redone and improvised in 1896 during the time of K Sheshadri Iyer, the very famous Dewan of the Mysore Kingdom. He is also credited to bringing electricity first to Bangalore. The water from the reservoir was transported through brick aqueduct to Turabanahalli, where it was filtered and chlorinated. From here it flowed to a pumping station at Soladevanahalli. Steam pumps were used to pump water from here and it finally reached the Jewel filters in Malleswaram from where the water was distributed to the entire city.

“The water walk is an interesting way to know more about the city, you can learn about how the Hesarghatta reservoir served the water needs of Bangalore in the late nineteenth century. And also get to look around the city’s first pumping station at Soladevanahalli where the pumps, shipped from around the world, were first put into use,” says Renjana Gopinathan of Black Swan which connects tourists with local communities and their history, way of life, and culture.

She further adds, “This walk will enlighten you about the science of transportation of water during a time when pipes were not yet manufactured. The brick aqueducts built of stone, brick and lime, still standing, is a technology dating back to the Romans. Also you will get to see the lake, the reservoir from where the water was sourced and also the volute siphon that was designed to take away the excess water when the reservoir was full. You will come back with stories of the yore that will fascinate you and prod you to know more.”

When: 4th June, 2011
Time: 08:00 am To 03:00 pm
To be a part of this walk, call Renjana at 99002-85305 or send an e-mail to
Tags: namma oora neeru - a water walk, hesarghatta reservoir

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