Architectural Heritage Safeguarding
logo ArcHe-S
Chettinad water
Chettinad water
Chettinad water
Chettinad water
hettinad water
Chettinad water

Water Management System


The Chettinad region is home to some of the most interesting traditional water management systems and drainage patterns. Water management was devised by Chettiars and agricultural communities to control the flow of water which was entirely dependent on rain water resources.
Oorani is a Tamil word for the surface water storage tank located in the villages and towns. In Chettinad, each village comprises a minimum of three water bodies in accordance with the storage needs of the villagers for drinking and bathing. The roofs typical of Chettinad architecture are designed to harvest water in the courtyards and then divert to
the various different ponds through a water drainage network.
Erys are the traditional surface water storage reservoirs found in Tamil Nadu. Organized into a huge network over the ages, they have played a very important role for the ecosystem and for irrigation in areas with low-rainfall, such as Chettinad. Due to this climatic constraint, since settling in the region, the Chettiars have been particularly involved in sustainable water management for agriculture and therefore in shaping the landscape.