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Dakar, a densely populated capital undergoing rapid change, is facing various environmental, social and economic challenges. The organization of the Youth Olympic Games (YOG) in 2026 and the opening of new public transport lines (Bus Rapid Transit and Regional Express Transport) provided AREP with the opportunity both to conceive an urban improvement plan for the area around the Petersen station and to design a low-carbon district within a West African capital.

How can we combine urban improvement and ecological transition?

How can we combine urban development and integration of the local populations, especially those in the informal sector? 


The AREP vision and action plan for the transformation of this district is based on 5 key elements:

  1. A low-carbon district, which sets an example in terms of sustainable development by promoting low-energy and low-water consumption as well as sustainable mobility through solutions tailored to meet the very specific challenges and context of Dakar.
  2. A "pre-visional" approach that goes beyond the long-established polarity between the perennial (sustainable but fixed) and the provisional (reversible but disposable). This approach aims to capitalize on the YOG-related investments for the benefit of the population of Dakar over time.
  3. The integration of informal activities into the city through the development of local management tools. Informal retail accounts for more than 70% of the overall economic activity in Dakar and takes place around commercial zones and transport hubs. For this reason, it is necessary to develop contextually appropriate spaces and ways of governance.
  4. Transit-Oriented Development (TOD), that is to say the planning and creation of dense, compact, mixed-use, walkable and cyclable urban areas centred around public transport
  5. City Information Modelling (CIM), a 3D model that fosters cooperation between the various areas of expertise involved and meant to be part of the consultation and communication process in order to attract investors.

This type of low-carbon urban planning meets the dual goal of local development and of greenhouse gas emissions reduction. The pilot project to create a sustainable district enables AREP both to support Dakar's ecological transition and to provide an example of transition as an outlet for successful and replicable experimentation.

Find out more about the CIM-Petersen study on Plateforme:


  • Clients: Treasury department (French Ministry of Economy and Finance) and Executive Council of Urban Transport in Dakar (CETUD)
  • Project owner: CETUD
  • Official partner: World Bank
  • AREP areas of expertise: Urban planning, "Pre-visional", Flow and Mobility, Environment, CIM, Plateforme
  • External partners: French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS), Research Institute for Development (IRD), Redman, VUF Bikes, Sasminimum, Syflen, Big Wata, Backacia, Sunna design

2019: Feasibility study regarding the Petersen station area; urban programming and urban integration study regarding the Iba Mar Diop Stadium

January 2021: Analysis (as part of the ongoing study)

November 2020-August 2021: overall duration of the study

For any questions, please contact:

Augutin Vatelot, Project / Contract Manager
International Business Development Manager, International public and private clients / International development

Agnès de Rodellec, Project leader, urbanist-economist, Territories department