DKL Project – Dakar (Sénégal), 2011

Undergoing strong population growth due in particular to the great rural exodus caused by years of drought, Dakar has expanded considerably in 30 years. Constrained by the geographical site of the Cape Verde peninsula, the worrying spread of the capital city over the entire northern part of the peninsula has occurred through the development of successive residential zones, which have now reached the outer suburbs. These residential areas, which are very spread out around the “Derklé -Khar Yalla-Liberté” neighbourhoods, “DKL” for short, are sorely lacking in facilities and also include informal settlements whose inaccessibility leave their inhabitants in highly precarious situations.

The site under study covers a perimeter of approximately 1600 ha, developing transversally in the way of a beltway; it is located at the intersection of the central districts of Dakar (Centre-ville, Plateau, Médina, Grand Dakar) and neighbourhoods of the eastern suburbs (Pikine, Guédiawaye and Rufisque). These DKL neighbourhoods must be equipped with more efficient networks and tertiary facilities, which they are currently totally lacking, in order to meet the needs of the population in this very dense residential area. However, in an overall vision of the city, the purpose of this rebalancing operation is also to turn this beltway, with its advantageous central location, into a genuine zone of exchange between central Dakar and the suburbs. It is also essential that this beltway/zone of exchange engages with the environmental issues of a city that is currently on the verge of asphyxiation. Beyond the critical issue of sanitation, the question of how to make the city greener must also be addressed. Vegetation has all but disappeared on the peninsula as a result of urban pressure, leading to its suffocation in a climate that is already very harsh (heat, winds, sand, dust…). This project must be an opportunity to reintegrate breathing spaces in the city by combining green spaces and public spaces.

The definition of a project for this beltway intervenes in an almost entirely urbanised area. The aim is to work on an urban restructuring from existing elements (surfaces that may be available more or less in the longer term). The project foresees two levels of intervention, both on the scale of the greater territory and on the scale of operational projects:

A regulatory planning level, defining a comprehensive 25-year project providing elements for the development of an Urban Master Plan.

A pre-operational level through the study of five pilot operations:

1.    The creation of a catchment basin in a public green space, this project being intended as a starting point for the development of green Dakar.
2.    The creation of a municipal nursery to be used for the development of the area.
3.    The creation of two main arteries supporting tertiary activities
4.    The study for the redevelopment of the Liberty 6 intersection heralding this new tertiary centre
5.    The construction of two health centres.


Project management assistance for the DKL (Derklé-Kharyalla-Liberté) area


Dakar city with the support of The Global fund for cities development (FMDV)


INTERSCENE - Thierry Huau - Landscape Architect & Urbanist


1 000 ha


Current study