New World Bank financing will boost climate change adaptation and resilience in flood-prone Dar es Salaam

WASHINGTON, October 4, 2022 – New financing approved by the World Bank Board of Directors will help reduce flood exposure for more than 300,000 people, including many low-income communities, while providing access to better infrastructure and services. It will also help transform a flood-prone area in the center of the city into a vibrant green space and commercial and residential area that will benefit all residents of Dar es Salaam.

Additionally, users of the city’s bus rapid transit system and other commuters will benefit from less traffic disruption due to flooding during the rainy season through the implementation of the new Msimbazi Basin Development Project. , financed to the tune of 200 million dollars by the International Development Association (IDA )*.

“Harnessing urbanization to promote economic growth and job creation is a priority of our partnership framework with Tanzania,” said Preeti Arora, the World Bank’s acting director for Tanzania. “Despite its vital role as an engine of growth for the nation, Dar es Salaam’s business environment is negatively impacted by the unplanned nature of its growth, limited urban services and the vulnerability of settlements and critical infrastructure to climate-related hazards This new support will help transform the city into a more efficient metropolitan area.

With approximately six million inhabitants, Dar es Salaam represents 40% of the total urban population of Tanzania and 17% of the national GDP. Growing at 5.6% per year, it is expected to become a megacity with a population of over 10 million by 2030. Formal planning has not kept pace with the city’s population growth. An estimated 70% of the city’s development is informal and unaccompanied by service extensions, leaving the booming urban population with infrastructure systems designed for a much smaller city.

“Given Dar es Salaam’s flat topography and limited drainage network, almost every rainy season brings flooding and the area near the lower reaches of the Msimbazi River is the most affected. This situation has become increasingly serious over the past decade due to rapid and unplanned growth, which has resulted in increased flood intensity and more people moving to flood-prone areas.” said John Morton, Senior Urban Specialist at the World Bank. “The project is designed to be resilient to this rapid urbanization and the anticipated impacts of climate change through a flood prevention approach that reduces impacts on mobility, property, health, livelihoods and economic development. “

The new project, whose development objective is to enhance flood resilience and integrated urban development in the economically important and flood-prone area of ​​the Msimbazi River Basin, will consist of five components: (1) development infrastructure the Msimbazi river basin; (2) preventive resettlement; (3) strengthen institutions for resilient urban development; (4) project management; and (5) contingent emergency response. It will be co-financed by a credit of 30 million dollars from the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation and a grant of 30 million euros from the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The project was conceptualized with the support of a grant from the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, which supported baseline assessments and facilitated the identification of stakeholders for project interventions. The Nordic Development Fund and the Japanese Government’s Quality Infrastructure Investment Partnership and Tokyo Development Learning Center provided knowledge and technical advice on green infrastructure.

The project also builds on nearly two decades of World Bank engagement in urban development in Dar es Salaam, including the Dar es Salaam Metropolitan Development Project, which will end in December 2022.

“Public spaces and green spaces are scarce with only 2% of Dar es Salaam classified as public green spaces and as little as 0.1% classified as parkland. While much of the project area in the lower Msimbazi Valley is open space, the quality of green spaces, wetlands, forests and riverbanks has been degraded due to urban pressure, deforestation and the dumping of waste. Through the project, the people of Dar es Salaam will also benefit from the city’s first major urban park,” said Allen Natai, Senior Transport Specialist at the World Bank.

* The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grants and loans at low or no interest rates for projects and programs that stimulate economic growth, reduce poverty and improve the lives of the poor. IDA is one of the largest sources of aid to the world’s 74 poorest countries, 39 of them in Africa. IDA resources bring positive change to the 1.3 billion people who live in IDA countries. Since 1960, IDA has provided $458 billion to 114 countries. Annual commitments averaged around $29 billion over the last three years (FY19-FY21), of which around 70% went to Africa. Learn more online: #IDAworks

Michael J. Birnbaum