Expert dialogue to save major link road in Colombia

Published: 5 December 2014

Joost Stronkhorst, a specialist in coastal zone management with Deltares, is a member of a Dutch expert team that is working with a Colombian expert team on the acute coastal erosion problem affecting the Caribbean Colombian coast.

Coastal erosion is undermining the road from Santa Marta to Barranquilla, which will disappear into the waves very soon unless action is taken. This road – the RN90 – is the only coastal road providing a direct link between the port of Barranquilla and the capital, Bogotá, and so it represents a vital economic interest. The road goes straight through a national park.

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Building with Nature and ROADAPT

Deltares is contributing our expertise in the area of Building with Nature, with solutions that prevent erosion and generate ecological added value. Where possible, we will be drawing on knowledge generated by the Deltares ROADAPT project looking at the vulnerability of European roads.
The aim of the expert dialogue is to establish a sound problem analysis (based on expert judgement) in four days (from 1 to 4 December) and to identify possible solutions for the medium and long terms. Integrated Coastal Zone Management and Building with Nature are the guiding principles.

Unique international encounter

The unique feature of this international encounter is the involvement of both the Colombian Ministry of the Environment (MADS) and the Ministry of Transport. Both Ministers will be present on the final day of the Colombian-Dutch expert dialogue to receive the recommendations.

The Dutch eleven-member, multidisciplinary, expert team reflects the broad range of the Dutch water sector: Arcadis, Deltares, HKV, Imares, MTI-Holland, Royal HaskoningDHV, Rijkswaterstaat and Witteveen+Bos.

This expert dialogue between the Netherlands and Columbia is being supported by the Partners for Water programme and it is being organised jointly by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO) and the Colombian Ministry of the Environment.