Oval 377 Created with Sketch Beta. Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Due to the significant amount of nature-based work being conducted in Dar es Salaam, we have aimed to ensure that all project activities align with existing work and contribute to improved co-ordination and up-scaling in the city.

Map updated


  • Current population is 4.4 million with an estimated annual growth rate of 6.5%.
  • The urban population is expected to increase by 61.5 million between 2010 and 20502.
  • The main rivers in Dar es Salaam are the Mpiji, Msimbazi, Kizinga and Mzinga Rivers.
  • Challenges related to solid waste and sewerage management, stormwater drainage and urban expansion are the main contributors to river degradation.
  • Many residents are located within floodplains and therefore flooding is a frequent problem.


Oval 377 Created with Sketch Beta. 2016 Achievements

In collaboration with ICLEI’s INTERACT-Bio project, UNA Rivers started developing a coordination matrix which aims to house information on all organisations in Dar es Salaam that are currently undertaking work relating to natural assets.

ICLEI engaged with the city’s master planning process by presenting recommendations for city planning to the Master Plan Committee. This included linking the Committee to important stakeholders and providing much needed information on the importance of biodiversity and ecosystem services.

Oval 377 Created with Sketch Beta. 2017 Achievements

The guideline, which aims to address the fundamental questions of HOW and WHY to plan for rivers in African cities, was presented to a range of stakeholders during two project trips, with their inputs and comments influencing the guidelines development. A variety of entry points for mainstreaming of the guidelines into city level planning and implementation are being explored.

A desktop study was initiated to compile existing and available natural asset data into a single database. The research included a preliminary analysis of the current state of natural assets identified in Dar es Salaam. The information (including GIS data) gathered can be used in the city’s planning processes.

Oval 377 Created with Sketch Beta. 2018 Achievements

Cities participating in the UNA Rivers Project, namely Addis Ababa in Ethiopia, Dar es Salaam in Tanzania and Lilongwe in Malawi were invited to attend and participate in a city to city knowledge exchange event in Entebbe, Uganda. Participating cities were able to share key challenges affecting their city’s development as well as share and learn about common African solutions which could be replicated in each city

During the UNA Rivers Project preliminary scoping meetings in 2016, ICLEI Africa was advised by the City of Dar es Salaam that whilst the City of Dar es Salaam boasts an excellent team of researchers, practitioners, NGOs and government officials all working on environmental issues within the City, there is limited coordination and integration of efforts leading to duplication of efforts and limited knowledge sharing.

A lack of coordination and subsequent integration of efforts is a major challenge in cities world-wide and is particularly problematic in cities that lack institutional capacity. As a result, short term and overlapping projects are often set in motion rather than longer term, multi-partner, cost-efficient and more integrated projects.

Improving institutional capacity to improve coordination of work is crucial in helping facilitate knowledge sharing and best practice lessons. Coordination helps to build partnership and ensures streamlining of work happening across the City. Coordination also promotes better communication and assists cities with preventing institutional duplication.

Based on the findings from the preliminary scoping planning meetings at the beginning of the UNA: Rivers Project, as well as subsequent meetings with (1) UNEP, (2) the World Bank, (3) the Regional Commission of Dar es Salaam (Hon. Paul Makonda) and (4) city officials from the five local municipalities in Dar es Salaam (Ilala, Temeke, Ubungo, Kinondoni and Kigamboni), ICLEI Africa offered to support the initial steps in achieving improved co-ordination by creating an ‘institutional map’ of projects and organisations working on environmental topics in the City of Dar es Salaam. This was supported by the relevant city officials.

During the course of 2017 and 2018, the institutional map was developed by ICLEI Africa with input from UNEP, the World Bank, the Regional Commissioner of Dar es Salaam as well as city officials from the five local municipalities in Dar es Salaam (mentioned above). The final version of the intuitional map was finalised in August 2018.

Tanzania is a country with exceptional biodiversity, drawing thousands of tourists annually. Tanzania’s National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (NBSAP) outlines numerous actions needed to sustain the benefits of nature provided by the country’s rich biodiversity. However, the NBSAP requires significant support from the local municipalities within Tanzania in order to be realised.

Ilala Municipal Council, a rapidly growing local municipality from within the City of Dar es Salaam, was selected in February 2018 by Dar es Salaam City Council for the development of a Local Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (LBSAP). Through the UNA Rivers Project, ICLEI Africa has facilitated several workshops during the course of August, September and October to not only support Ilala Municipality with the development of the content of their LBSAP but also to build institutional capacity within the municipality to implement it.

The Ilala LBSAP was initiated during the course of August 2018 and will be finalised in early 2019.

The 2007 Tanzania Planning Guidelines were developed in line with the Urban Planning Act (2007), the Human Settlements Development Policy (2000) and the Land Act (1999).

The Ministry of Lands, Housing and Human Settlement Development (MLHHSD) have expressed a need to revise these guidelines to include the more up to date legislation as well as address urban challenges including, but not limited to, planning for urban natural assets and climate change.
Through the UNA Rivers Project, ICLEI Africa is currently conducting research to develop detailed recommendations to guide an upgrade of the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Human Settlements Development (MLHHSD) 2007 Tanzania Planning Guidelines. The recommendations will be available in 2019.

As part of the UNA Rivers Project, ICLEI Africa aims to green and restore open spaces within Dar es Salaam to improve the livelihoods and wellbeing of local communities living within and around the city. To ensure that this work is needed, relevant and addresses specific needs of the communities on the ground, ICLEI Africa has appointed a local service provider based in Tanzania, with a working knowledge of the open spaces in Dar es Salaam and the communities living in and around them, to develop a detailed plan for greening throughout the city.

This business case will include an analysis of all potential sites within the City of Dar es Salaam which could be ‘greened’ and restored, along with recommendations for each site on how it could be greened (e.g. to include food gardens, nature walkways, art works and sculptures etc.). The business case will include clear recommendations on which sites to prioritise within the city. This deliverable will be finalised during the course of 2019.

Oval 377 Created with Sketch Beta. Gallery

Copyright © cbc.iclei.org 2017 | All rights reserved