Thursday, October 14, 2004

More power to Baghdad

Power and reliable service leads to fewer pissed people and more security.

Power Restored to 10,000 Baghdad Residents
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Oct. 10, 2004 -- An 8th Engineer Battalion project to provide electricity to 10,000 residents of three neighborhoods in Baghdad's Zaphernia district was officially completed Oct. 2, a Multinational Force Iraq news release reported.
The project is part of the 1st Cavalry Division's ongoing effort to improve quality of living and safety in the Iraqi capital.
Most residents of Baghdad, and until recently the residents of these three neighborhoods, draw power from an outdated and overtaxed Saddam-era power network using improvised and often dangerous wiring, according to the release.
Second to security, electricity is the most important thing to people here, according to a poll conducted by the U.S. Army's 8th Engineers in Baghdad.
After the Zaphernia district council identified the need for the new power network, the 8th Engineers contracted three local engineers to oversee the project, which totaled $1.1 million in funds allocated to infrastructure renovations in Iraq by the U.S. government. Throughout the next three months, nearly 200 local laborers and technicians installed the network needed to supply electricity to about 2,500 homes in the three neighborhoods.
Existing high-tension lines that connect the area with the rest of Baghdad were also renovated as a part of the project. The capabilities of these high-tension lines had been severely limited by looting.
Besides the electricity being restored, security has also improved in the Zaphernia area since projects to improve essential services began there several months ago, the MNF-I release said.


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