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New Technologies Applied to Integrating Regional Infrastructure

By Federico Mazzella ,
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South American citizens can now access information on 581 regional infrastructure projects on the new COSIPLAN website.

COSIPLAN has updated its Integration and Development Hubs website so that citizens from every country in South America can easily access location-specific information and interactive maps for the 581 infrastructure projects that currently make up the COSIPLAN Project Portfolio. The development of the new site was coordinated by INTAL, which functions as the Secretariat for the Technical Coordination Committee.

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Source: Integration and Development Hubs website

The Integration and Development Hubs website is a response to the challenge of providing local, regional, and global users with clearer information on projects that involve one, two, or more countries in South America. It also seeks to articulate physical integration projects with the areas that they are in, through descriptive studies of the economic, social, and environmental features of each hub (link in Spanish).

The improvements that were implemented on the site include the creation of ten new georeferenced map layers based on Google Maps that can be overlaid and activated or deactivated depending on what users wish to find out. These new layers display the territorial features of each hub (protected areas and areas at risk from seismic activity, volcanoes, tsunamis, floods, and landslides), social aspects (population distribution and indigenous communities), economic activity (GDP), and infrastructure (port and airport systems), all of which can be visualized and compared to the location of active projects on the COSIPLAN Project Portfolio.

CAPRICORN HUB: PORTFOLIO PROJECTS AND NATURAL HAZARDS

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Source: Integration and Development Hubs Website

These new features enable users to easily access information on all project types through intuitive graphics: color-coded lines are used for linear projects and Google icons for location-specific ones. These updates will make it much easier to search for projects.

The changes are about more than just a sleek, user-friendly design: the new site also includes an interactive multimedia space where users can find out more about the physical infrastructure being built in their countries and the region. The platform is connected to the COSIPLAN Project Information System (SIP), which brings together all available information on the 581 portfolio projects, their features, and their current status.

The Amazon Hub (link in Spanish) includes the Amazon and northeastern regions of Brazil along with the states of Goia and Tocantins; the southern central area of Colombia; all of continental Ecuador; and the northern central area of Peru.

This is the largest hub in the COSIPLAN portfolio and covers the equivalent of 45% of the surface area of South America, 30% of which is under some sort of environmental protection. The Brazilian states of Pará and Amazonas contain more than 1.4 million square kilometers of protected areas, which accounts for around 60% of the total protected area within the hub

AMAZON HUB: PORTFOLIO PROJECTS AND PROTECTED AREAS

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Source: Integration and Development Hubs Website

The Amazon Hub ranks second in terms of population numbers and fifth in terms of gross domestic product (GDP), as it is home to 32% of the population of South America (132,687,257 inhabitants) and accounts for 19% of the continent’s GDP.

Existing and planned infrastructure in this hub is largely defined by the Andes and the immense Amazon River Basin, the largest in the world. The support system for the hub is made up of 14 main ports, nine of which move over 10 million tons of bulk goods per year. River transportation in the region is largely concentrated in the Amazon Basin and the larger tributaries that feed into it, which include the Negro, Putumayo, Ucayali, Madeira, Jurua, Purus, and Madeira rivers.

The Andean Hub (link in Spanish) stretches from the Caribbean coast of Venezuela and Colombia to Bolivia’s southern border with Argentina, including the parts of the Andes in Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia, all of Venezuela except the state of Amazonas, and the Pacific coast of Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru.

This hub contains 16% of the surface area of South America (2,845,658 square kilometers) and 28% of its population (111,195,797 inhabitants), making it the third-most densely populated hub after the MERCOSUR/Chile and Amazon hubs. It also accounts for 21% of the region’s GDP and 80% of the total economies of the countries in question.

The infrastructure of the hub is shaped by the Andes, which divide it into two different spaces. In this hub, both the pre-existing and planned connectivity infrastructure matrices are mostly made up of roads and, to a lesser degree, railways.

ANDEAN HUB: PORTFOLIO PROJECTS

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Source: Integration and Development Hubs Website

Of the different natural hazards that affect this hub, the focus has been on four global or regional hazards, namely earthquakes, volcanoes, tsunamis, and large riverbed floods. Landslides are another geographically specific but very frequent, harmful hazard in the area near the Andes.

ANDEAN HUB: SEISMIC AND VOLCANIC HAZARDS

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Source: Integration and Development Hubs Website

The MERCOSUR/Chile Hub (link in Spanish) is made up of a large part of Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay, all of Uruguay, and central Chile. It covers 18% of the surface area of South America.

This is the most populous hub in the portfolio, as it is home to 35% of the population of South America (141,453,273 inhabitants) and accounts for the largest percentage of the continent’s GDP (48%).

MERCOSUR/CHILE HUB: POPULATION DISTRIBUTION

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Source: Integration and Development Hubs Website

MERCOSUR/CHILE HUB: GDP BY ADMINISTRATIVE DISTRICT

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Source: Integration and Development Hubs Website

The MERCOSUR–Chile Hub has a dense, complex infrastructure network around the Río de la Plata basin and the Brazilian states that are part of the hub. Without taking planned works into account, the total length of the road network in the countries that make up the hub is 1,973,802 kilometers, just 6% of which are paved. The hub has a total 61,424 kilometers of rail network, 87% of which is currently operational.

The sea and river port system in the MERCOSUR/Chile Hub is made up of 46 main ports, which are mainly located on the Atlantic coast, the Río de la Plata, and the Paraná, Paraguay, and Uruguay rivers, in addition to the Chilean ports on the Pacific coast. River transportation within the hub is mainly concentrated along the Paraná and Paraguay rivers and, to a lesser extent, the Uruguay River. There are maritime cabotage routes between Brazil and Argentina which mainly service trade in vehicles and autoparts.

 

MERCOSUR/CHILE HUB: PORTFOLIO PROJECTS

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Source: Integration and Development Hubs Website

Integration and Development Hubs

COSIPLAN territorial planning is organized around the Integration and Development Hubs. A hub is a multinational land area that includes a certain endowment of natural resources, human settlements, productive areas, and logistics services.

By dividing South America up into Integration and Development Hubs, the countries have been able to identify and agree on infrastructure projects through a shared vision. The hubs are as follows: the Amazon Hub, the Andean Hub, the Southern Andean Hub, the Capricorn Hub, Southern Hub, the Guianese Shield Hub, the Paraguay-Paraná Waterway Hub, the Central Interoceanic Hub, the MERCOSUR/Chile, and the Peru-Brazil-Bolivia Hub.

INTEGRATION AND DEVELOPMENT HUBS: PROJECT NUMBERS AND ESTIMATED INVESTMENT

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Source: COSIPLAN Project Portfolio 2016 (link in Spanish)

The Amazon Hub (link in Spanish) is made up of 72 projects that are organized into eight project groups and represent an estimated investment of US$27 billion. The active portfolio for the hub includes 50 projects, which represent an investment of US$20.13 billion. By the end of 2019, it is estimated that 33% of the estimated investment in the hub portfolio will have been spent. The hub contains 22 concluded projects, for a total of US$6.89 billion in investment, which is equivalent to nearly 25% of the total for the portfolio.

The Andean Hub (link in Spanish) is made up of 66 projects that are organized into five project groups and represent an estimated investment of US$16.69 billion. The active portfolio for the hub includes 46 projects, which represents an investment of US$27 billion. Some 13 of these will be concluded in the next four years (2016–2019), accounting for 18% of the total estimated investment for the hub portfolio. There are 20 concluded projects in the hub, which represent US$994 million.

The Capricorn Hub (link in Spanish) is made up of 81 projects that are organized into five project groups and represent an estimated investment of US$16.69 billion. The active portfolio for the hub includes 67 projects, which represents an investment of US$14.1 billion. By the end of 2019, it is estimated that 26% of the estimated investment in the hub portfolio will have been spent. The hub contains 14 concluded projects, for a total of US$2.69 billion in investment, which is equivalent to nearly 16% of the total for the portfolio.

The Southern Hub (link in Spanish) is made up of 47 projects that are organized into two project groups and represent an estimated investment of US$4.5 billion. The active portfolio for the hub includes 42 projects, which represents an investment of US$4.1 billion. If all 14 projects that are currently being implemented are taken into account, it is estimated that once these have been concluded, 41% of the estimated investment in the hub portfolio will have been spent. There are five concluded projects in the hub, which represent US$443 million: Two of these are electrical interconnections which account for 95% of investments.

The Guianese Shield Hub (link in Spanish) is made up of 20 projects that are organized into four project groups and represent an estimated investment of US$4.58 billion. The active portfolio for the hub includes 14 projects, which represents an investment of US$4.5 billion. Two of these will be concluded in the next four years (2016–2019), accounting for 17% of the total estimated investment for the hub portfolio. The hub contains six concluded projects, for a total of US$87 million in investment, which is equivalent to nearly 2% of the total for the portfolio.

The Paraguay–Paraná Waterway Hub (link in Spanish) is made up of 89 projects that are organized into five project groups and represent an estimated investment of US$6.33 billion. The active portfolio for the hub includes 74 projects, which represents an investment of US$4.68 billion. Some 16 of these will be concluded in the next four years (2016–2019), accounting for 50% of the total estimated investment for the hub portfolio. The hub contains 15 concluded projects, for a total of US$2.69 billion in investment, which is equivalent to nearly 16% of the total for the portfolio.

The Central Interoceanic Hub (link in Spanish) is made up of 63 projects that are organized into five project groups and represent an estimated investment of US$11.5 billion. The active portfolio for the hub includes 46 projects, which represents an investment of US$10.84 billion. Ten of these will be concluded in the next four years (2016–2019), accounting for 23% of the total estimated investment for the hub portfolio. The hub contains 17 concluded projects, for a total of US$663 billion in investment.

The MERCOSUR/Chile Hub (link in Spanish) is made up of 120 projects that are organized into two project groups and represent an estimated investment of US$60.97 billion. The active portfolio for the hub includes 96 projects, which represents an investment of US$52.18 billion. Some 13 of these will be concluded in the next four years (2016–2019), accounting for 15% of the total estimated investment for the hub portfolio. There are 24 concluded projects in the hub, which represent US$8.79 billion in investment.

The Peru/Brazil/Bolivia Hub (link in Spanish) is made up of 24 projects that are organized into three project groups and represent an estimated investment of US$32 billion. The active portfolio for the hub includes 19 projects, which represents an investment of US$26.03 billion. If all seven projects that are currently being implemented are taken into account, it is estimated that once these have been concluded, 78% of the estimated investment in the hub portfolio will have been spent. There are five concluded projects in the hub, which represent a total of US$5.98 billion.

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