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Barbados Coastal Infrastructure Program improves shorelines & expands local economic development


To protect natural resources, a primary driver for economic opportunity tied to tourism, IADB helped Barbados invest in significant shoreline stabilization and erosion control projects, especially in the Holetown Beach area.

Topics Covered

Coastal & Tidal Flooding
Hurricanes & Severe Storms
Sea Level Rise
Ecosystem Degradation


Initial: 24 Million USD



Bonds & Loans

Project Status

Operational since 2011

Problem Addressed

Barbados was dealing with significant coastal erosion which not only impacted their natural resilience but also their economic sustainability, much of which was based on tourism. Improvements not only needed to be sustainable over time, but also needed to encourage and increase safe access to the beachfront area.

Solutions Used

The program supported by IADB included shoreline stabilization and erosion control projects aimed to create and/or enhance the amenity value of beaches and catalyzing private sector investment in the rehabilitation of properties and infrastructure along the waterfront.

In addition, funds supported projects designed to restore coastal habitats, including dune rehabilitation and water quality improvements. Activities also aimed to encourage increased access to the waterfront through the establishment, where there is local interest and community support, of coastal footpaths and new accesses. Finally work was done to upgrade capabilities and support the process of innovation in coastal conservation.



Created a total of 4.5km of continuous, safe beach access, including a boardwalk and concrete walkway.


Two previously inaccessible beach areas saw an increase of 64,000 person-hour utilization in the first year.


Improved water quality was not a stated goal, but the investment led to lower turbidity in marine water.


Beach volume increased by 26,400 cubic meters.


Businesses in the area reported a 1-5% increase in monthly revenue as a direct consequence of the projects.

Something Unique

The work was funded by an Inter-American Development Bank loan.

Last Updated

Jul 3rd, 2019

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