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Providing access to schools, hospitals and markets for tsunami-affected communities in Samoa

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Samoa Post-Tsunami Reconstruction Project
Samoa post-tsunami project

Approval Date: 2 November 2010

Closing Date: 30 April 2013

Total Project Cost: US$11.8 million

Donors: World Bank (International Development Association)—US$10 million
Pacific Regional Infrastructure Facility—US$1.8 million

Implementing Agency: Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment; Land Transport Authority

     Prepare communities to address future natural disasters and adopt disaster risk reduction measures. 
     Restore existing roads, bridges and seawalls, and provide new roads to resettled communities.
     Help finance the costs associated with the Government's rehabilitation and reconstruction program to recover from the tsunami.


    Samoa is highly vulnerable to natural hazards. Seventy percent of Samoa’s population lives on the coast, facing hazards such as cyclones, tsunamis, flooding and storm surges. Cyclones Ofa (1990) and Val (1991) have been the most notable, affecting 195,000 and 88,000 people respectively. On September 29 2009, a powerful earthquake struck south of Samoa and was followed by a tsunami which caused a reported 143 deaths in the country. A further estimated 5,274 people were made homeless—many of whom have had to relocate further inland. The main affected areas, with about seven percent of the population, are the southern, eastern and southwestern coasts of Upolu Island. The estimated cost of direct damages and economic losses is US$124 million. The greatest costs were found in the transport sector, where the coastal road and accompanying sea walls were severely damaged.


    The Post-Tsunami Reconstruction Project aims to assist the Government of Samoa in its efforts to support the relocation and rehabilitation of communities on the island of Upolu affected by the tsunami. This will involve providing better transport access to schools, hospitals and markets for relocated communities, improving access to agricultural activities to support income generation, and assisting local communities with addressing future natural disasters. The project will be broken down into five components:

    Upgrading of existing access tracks and seawalls

    • Provide improved road access to relocation areas;
    • Construct a new link road that will provide an alternative route along the south coast above the natural disaster risk zone; and
    • Reinstate damaged seawalls and construct new seawalls to protect the east and south coast roads.

    Community Coastal Infrastructure Management Plans

    • Update the mapping of the affected and relocation areas; and
    • Assist with community infrastructure planning and monitoring, and disaster risk reduction.

    East Coast Inland Route
    Provide a new road link along the east coast above the natural disaster risk zone to improve access to and for communities relocating inland from the east coast, and provide a secure transport link between Samusu and Lalomanu.

    Dual-purpose pedestrian access routes
    Provide new and improved pedestrian access routes to relocation areas above the south east escarpment area, both to facilitate access for resettled families between their new homes and the coast, and to serve as evacuation routes in the event of a tsunami or cyclone.

    Project Management and Support
    Support contracted consultant services and staffing plus operating costs for in-house project management, administration, and monitoring and evaluation activities.


    The project will support tsunami-affected communities on the island of Upolu.


     Project Details
     Project Documents
     Download Project Flier (365kb pdf) 


    World Bank Task Team Leader

    Demetrios Papathanasiou
    Senior Infrastructure Specialist

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