Lakes in Bangalore

There are numerous lakes in Bangalore. Most of the lakes in the Bangalore were constructed in the Sixteenth century by damming the natural valley systems by constructing bunds. The effect of urbanization has taken some heavy toll on the Beautiful lakes in Bangalore. The lakes in the city have been largely encroached for urban infrastructure and as result, in the heart of the city only 17 good lakes exist as against 51 healthy lakes in 1985. Urban development has caused 16 lakes getting converted to bus stands, Golf courses, playgrounds and residential colonies, and few tanks were breached under the malaria eradication programme.

In recent years, the Management of Lakes traditionally done by the government agencies witnessed experimentation by the Lake Development Authority with a limited public-private sector participation in respect of three lakes, which has proved controversial and resulted in almost a reversal of the policy. Bangalore Development Authority (BDA), Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) and the Lake Development Authority (LDA) have been entrusted with maintenance and upkeep of the lakes.

Sl. No.
Name of the lake Approx. Area (in ha.s) Location
1 Yelahanka Doddakere 135.68 North of Yelahanka and along NH 7
2 Puttenahalli (Yelahanka) Lake 13.77 North of Yelahanka satellite town and along Daddaballapura road
3 Jakkur Lake 50 North of Jakkuru village
4 Yellamallapa Chetty Kere 110 Towards Northeast of Krishnarajapura and along Old madras Road
5 Puttenahalli (J.P.Nagar) Lake 32 Located south-east of Bangalore, at a distance of 2km from Puttenahalli village
6 Byramangala Lake 350 Located near Bidadi Industrial Estate, behind Toyota Kirloskar Facotry
7 Varthur Lake 1804 Located towards north-west of Varthur, towards south -east of Bangalore
8 Gottigere Lake 14.98 Located near Gottegere village which exists towards the south of Bangalore
9 Begur (Aggrahara)  Doddakere 36.69 Located towards east of Begur and towards west of Hosur Road
10 Kaggadasapura Lake 13.12 West of Kaggadasapura near Salem railway line
11 Urumundinakere Vibhuthipura 6.99 Interior and north of HAL industrial area
12 Doddakere, Hosakerehalli 24.12 Located near Hosakerehalli village adjoining Banashankari III stage layout
13 Madhavara Lake 24 left side of the Bangalore Poona Highway (NH-4) and situated between the 16th and 17th KM of this road

The earliest history of creation of lakes in and around the city is traced to the founders of Bangalore or Bengaluru -the Kempe Gowdas- in the Sixteenth century and later by the Wodeyars of Mysore Kingdom and the British.

Most of the lakes and tanks were man made for purposes of drinking water, irrigation and fishing needs and they have also favorably influenced microclimate of the city. The lake waters have also served as "Dhobhi Ghats" or places where washer-men ('dhobis' is the locale usage in India), have traditionally used them as a means of livelihood for washing clothes and drying them. The lakes have also served to replenish ground water resources in the vicinity, which are tapped through wells for drinking water.

In the 1960s the number of tanks and lakes was 280 and less than 80 in 1993. Until 1895 unfiltered water was supplied from tanks like Dharmambudhi (present day Bus station), Millers tank (Area opposite Cantonment railway station), Sankey and Ulsoor tanks. From 1896 water was supplied from Hessarghtta and from 1933 it was also obtained from Thippagondanahalli. In the 1970s the scheme to pump water from the Cauvery river 100 kilometres away was begun. The water needed to be raised up by 500 metres. The water demand in 2001 was 750 million litres per day and the actual supply is only 570 million litres per day and the per capita usage is about 105 litres per day. The national standard is 150 litres per day while the international standard is 200 litres per capita per day.

Encroachment of Lakes
Most of the lakes have vanished due to encroachment and construction activity for urban infrastructure expansion. The city once had 280-285 lakes of which 7 cannot be traced, 7 are reduced to small pools of water, 18 have been unauthorisedly encroached by slums and private parties, 14 have dried up and are leased out by the Government. 28 lakes have been used by the Bangalore Development Authority to distribute sites and build extensions for residential areas. The remaining lakes are in fairly advanced state of deterioration.

Some of the major lakes that disappeared over the years are:

  1. Shoolay lake changed to Football stadium
  2. Akkithimmanhalli lake changed to Corporation Hockey stadium
  3. Sampangi lake changed to Kanteerava Sports Complex
  4. Dharmanbudhi lake changed to Kempegowda Bus Station
  5. Challaghatta lake changed to Karnataka Golf Association
  6. Koramangala lake changed to National Games Complex in Ejipura
  7. Siddikatte Lake has now become KR Market
  8. Karanji tank is the Gandhi Bazar area
  9. Kempambudhi is now a sewerage collection tank
  10. Nagashettihalli lake changed to Space department
  11. Kadugondanahalli lake changed to Ambedkar Medical College
  12. Domlur lake changed to BDA layout
  13. Millers lake changed to Guru Nanak Bhavan, Badminton Stadium
  14. Subhashnagar lake changed to Residential layout
  15. Kurubarahalli lake changed to Residential layout
  16. Kodihalli lake changed to Residential layout
  17. Sinivaigalu lake changed to Residential layout
  18. Marenahalli lake changed to Residential layout
  19. Shivanahalli lake changed to Playground, Bus stand
  20. Chenamma tank changed to a burial ground, Banashankari 2nd Stage
  21. Puttennahalli tank changed to J.P. Nagar 6th Phase
  22. Jakkarayanakere has been converted into a sports ground
  23. Kamakshipalya Lake is converted into a sports ground
  24. Baalayyana Kere (kamakshipalya) is converted into a sports ground
  25. Dasarahalli tank is converted into Dr. B.R Ambedkar Stadium

Polluted Lakes in Bangalore

Varthur, Byramangala, Yellamallappachetty, Sarakki, Madiwala, Chunchaghatta, Kalkere, Harikere and Dasarahalli lakes are badly polluted condition. 47 lakes, including Madiwala, Nagavara, Agara, Yediyur, Lalbagh, Sankey and Hebbal have been found to be moderately polluted.

In the 1970s, there were still 285 lakes in the city, making it self-sufficient in its water needs. Today, however, there are just 194 lakes, and the large majority of them are sewage-fed.

On the evening of Thursday 16 February, residents in the south-east part of Bangalore noticed huge plumes of smoke rising into the sky. The smoke was coming from the middle of Bellandur Lake – the biggest lake in the city at a little over 890 acres. The fire in the lake burned for 12 hours and left behind a sinister black patch in the centre.

Bangalore has been subject to unchecked urbanisation in the wake of the IT sector-fuelled economic boom of the late 1990s. The many software companies that sprung up during the dotcom boom attracted hundreds of thousands of skilled IT professionals from across the country, with thousands more people moving from villages and small towns to the city in search of work. According to studies by the IISc, rapid urbanisation and expansion between 1973 and 2016 caused a 1005% increase in paved surfaces and decline of 88% in the city’s vegetation, while water bodies declined by 85% between 2000 and 2014.

Puttenahalli lake was one of Bengaluru's pristine lakes. However, pollution and neglect turned it into a cesspool of garbage and sewage. PNLIT is regularly working with the BBMP for future improvements to the lake and lake area. Karnataka Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) approved a proposal to get excess treated water from a nearby sewage treatment plant to fill the lake with clean water again. Some part of the lake area is encroached by hutments and the Upa Lokayukta is working towards their rehabilitation.

Deeply concerned with the unchecked deterioration of lakes in and around Bangalore and conscious of their critical role in maintaining healthy environs and recharging of ground water, Lake Development Authority was created vide Government Order No. FEE/12/ENG/02, Bangalore, Dated. 10th July 2002. The Lake Development Authority is an autonomous regulatory, planning and policy body for Protection, Conservation, Reclamation, Restoration, Regeneration and Integrated Development of Lakes, whether natural or man-made in the state of Karnataka.

As per the Government Order, Government of Karnataka dated 30.04.2003 the Lake Development Authority jurisdiction has been extended over the lakes in the other city municipal corporation of the state as well as lakes in these city municipalities which are the main sources for drinking water.

Save Bangalore Lakes Trust formed in August 2012. Workshop on Bnagalore Lakes was conducted on 10th November, 2013

Boating in Bangalore

Boating Facility is available in Lumbini Gardens & Ulsoor Lake. Lumbini Gardens is a wave pool with an artificial beach, situated on the Outer Ring Road on the banks of the Nagawara Lake. It is also an exclusive boating and leisure complex with a variety of entertainment activities introduced for the first time in Bangalore.

Lake Map in Bangalore - Rowing in Ulsoor Lake - Pollution of Bellandur Lake -