Mussulo Masterplan

Mussulo Island master plan, Angola

Mussulo is a peninsula just south of Luanda, the capital of Angola. The development on this low-lying peninsula has been random, with no formal structure. In 2015, Urbinveste appointed Zutari to provide transport, marine and utility infrastructure master planning for the Mussulo Island master plan project. The aim of this master planning project was to not only create a development framework, but also to protect the natural environment for the benefit of both tourists and Angolans.

Zutari conducted a high-level review of existing infrastructure conditions, including the power, water, waste, drainage, communications, geotechnical, flood, contamination, coastal/marine, and a transport review and strategy, including marine transport. After analysing the existing elements, the team liaised with relevant government agencies and established key principles that allowed us to develop a common understanding of critical transport and infrastructure issues.

Based on the information that was gathered, the team was able to propose options and network models, which enabled development direction and refined these options into clear infrastructure development strategies, with supporting engineering solutions as well as key infrastructure development principles and plans.

The port and coastal engineering scope of the project included a review of design conditions for the current and future conditions, including the expected long-term sea level rise (SLR). This included different scenarios for different return periods based on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) recommendations for the region. The wind and wave data for the area was also analysed based upon National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) data.

One of the challenges of the project was the limited information that was available on the complex location. Assessing the coastal vulnerability was not part of the original scope, but Zutari was appointed to help guide sustainable development of the coastline and ensure suitable setback buffers are considered when the architect developed the future development strategies.

The work included reviewing the topography, bathymetry and general morphological trends of the area surrounding the Mussulo peninsula; preparing a topographical map indicating indicates low elevation areas that may potentially be at risk of inundation; mapping the coastline into key coastal types, i.e. sandy, tidal flat, and mangrove, and marking exposed settlements.

The aim of this master planning project was to not only create a development framework, but also to protect the natural environment for the benefit of both tourists and Angolans.
One of the challenges of the project was the limited information that was available on the complex location.

It also involved undertaking a high-level vulnerability assessment of the coastline during Phase 1, based upon the following parameters: topography, bathymetry, wave impact, extreme water levels, environmental constraints, etc. The coastline was zoned based upon hazard level, each with different setback buffer levels prescribed. Long-term coastal protection strategies were reviewed with a view to the potential future impacts of climate change on this region and climate adaptation and resilience in the longer term. The project also involved mapping access to marine transport and mooring structures and evaluating opportunities and constraints pertaining to coastal adaptation and marine facilities.

The initial vulnerability assessment was followed by a more detailed analysis of typical profiles which was analysed with SBeach to assess the short-term storm erosion. The longer-term erosion and recession was analysed based upon desktop analysis, an evaluation of the extreme inundation level and corresponding SLR recession was done and more detailed setback buffers proposed. This resulted in a coastal vulnerability zoning map for future development. Preferred coastal adaptation alternatives were proposed for the different zones.

This master plan, which is in line with international best practice examples of integrated island-wide infrastructure and transportation strategies, will assist in the sustainable future development of the island.

*The Aurecon Africa business has been officially renamed Zutari as at 21 July 2020. Zutari acquired Aurecon Middle East on 20 November 2020.
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