The Gambia Integrated Urban and Coastal Resilience Technical Assistance Program

Context and Objectives

The Gambia’s unique geography results in it being particularly exposed to natural disasters and climate change impacts. The country is susceptible to flooding, saltwater intrusion, and erosion which are aggravated by drought, windstorms, coastal storms, and extreme precipitation during the rainy season. 

In this context, the challenges and needs for urban and coastal resilience in the Gambia are vast. Urban population grew at 4.5 percent per year during 2000-2017.

A previous ACP-EU NDRR project in the country active in 2013-15 provided technical assistance to study and catalogue existing risk information and support the National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA) to manage this data. Building on this assistance, and considering the broader risk management challenges outlined above, the Government requested additional support from the Program to update and enhance this risk analysis to better understand where disaster and climate risk is concentrated in Greater Banjul and along the 80 km coastline of the Gambia.

Main Activities

The project was comprised of the following components: 

  • Component 1 - Mapping of Greater Banjul and Assessing Subsidence: Under this component, a resilience plan for Banjul’s population and economy was prepared. One of the objectives was to accurately map how the city is concentrating people and assets. according to different sea level rise scenarios. 


  • Component 2 - Greater Banjul Flood and Sea Level Rise Risk Assessment: Building on the digital elevation model and mapping of buildings from Component 1, a detailed risk assessment of Banjul was developed.


  • Component 3 - Coastal Risk Assessment: A more accurate understanding of the dynamics of coastal erosion was needed to define the main hotspots of this activity. Activities under this component included using satellite imagery to measure coastal geomorphology along the coastline over the past 30 years to identify hotspots.


  • Component 4 - Data Management and visualization: The data, models and maps generated by the above activities were uploaded onto an open source platform for sharing risk-related data.


  • On May 4-5, 2021, a two-day virtual workshop was organized to validate the results and hotspots areas and the corresponding investment options. More specifically, results and findings of the flood and coastal risk assessment carried out for the Greater Banjul Area and surrounding region were presented, and there were discussions on the proposed risk reduction options for selected hotspots and feedback from the program stakeholders was collected. More than 50 participants attended the workshop from the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs (MOFEA) and sector ministries, specialized agencies (disaster risk management, environment, tourism, water resources, public works, etc.) local governments, and international partners including the Delegation of the European Union. 


  • In May-June 2021, the World Bank team conducted a two-week virtual project preparation mission. The mission met with all key stakeholders to go over the findings of the Flood and Coastal Risk Assessment and Investment Planning report in detail. Another dedicated session was held, with participation of the consulting firm who completed the study, to explain in detail different investment scenarios. About 20 participants coming from  the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs (MoFEA), the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change and Natural Resources (MECCNR), the National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA) and the municipal councils of Kanifing and Banjul City attended the session. An online platform was developed to ensure information is shared widely and accessible.


  • An external firm, Royal Haskoning DHV, was hired to provide critical technical support to the World Bank team and the Government of the Gambia to prioritize and refine investment options.  


  • Project stakeholders benefitted from increased knowledge and understanding in flood and coastal risks in the Greater Banjul Area. They demonstrated strong engagement to move forward the investments options identified by the report. Development partners also demonstrated high interests in financing the investment options identified through this Grant.

Partnerships and Coordination

The project is carried out by the World Bank, in collaboration with the Office of the Vice President, the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs, the National Disaster Management Agency, the Banjul City Council, and the Kanifing Municipal Council. 

Useful Links

The findings from the two-day virtual workshop, including a map of possible investment options, is available at the following link

  • Africa
Window of Action
  • Window 2
Amount approved
  • $750,000
  • 11/2019 - 08/2021