A project on Tuesday was initiated to establish a drinking water network in Basra's downtown areas of al-Janeena and al-Mufaqiya at a cost of nearly $100,000, an official source said.
"The houses in al-Janeena area will be linked to the main pipes," Engineer Ahmed al-Mayahi from Basra's construction unit told Aswat al-Iraq- Voices of Iraq- (VOI).
Mayahi explained that the areas of al-Janeena and Mufaqiya have old water networks, which negatively affected drinking water supplies in them.
According to the engineer, the completion period of the project, which will be carried out by a local company, is three months.
Basrah, 590 km (340 miles) south of the Iraqi capital Baghdad, has an estimated metropolitan population of 2,300,000 in 2008.
Basra is the cradle of the first civilization of Sumer. It has the seven main Iraqi ports. The first built in Islam 14 A.H. (After Hegira), the city played an important role in early Islamic history.
The area surrounding Basra has substantial petroleum resources and many oil wells. The city's oil refinery has a production capacity of about 140,000 barrels per day (bpd).
Basra is in a fertile agricultural region, with major products including rice, maize corn, barley, pearl millet, wheat and dates as well as livestock.
A network of canals flowed through the city, giving it the nickname "The Venice of the Middle East" at least at high tide.
(Voices of Iraq)