Naco, Sonora, Mexico

Air Quality and Paving Project in Naco, Sonora

Status: Completed


In 2007, there were approximately 156,000 square meters (m2) of unpaved streets in Naco, which represented 70% of the city’s roadways and constituted a serious public health problem for residents on both sides of the border. Vehicular traffic, coupled with prevailing wind conditions, resulted in blowing dust particles, particularly during the hot, dry summer months. The strong link between exposure to high concentrations of fine particles in the air and the incidence of respiratory illnesses has been well documented.

Additional health risks arose during the rainy season, when the unpaved streets became a pathogenic breeding ground due to the accumulation of mud, debris, and trash. Moreover, heavy dust particles in storm runoff were filling the city’s sewer lines with silt, reducing their flow capacity and increasing maintenance requirements and costs.

Project Scope

The project consisted of paving a surface area of approximately 62,727 m2 of streets with reinforced concrete or asphalt over a three-year period.  Approximately 60% of the streets were located downtown and the remaining 40% were in residential subdivisions. Only streets that already had proper water supply and wastewater collection infrastructure in place would be paved. The NADBank loan was allocated to pave 16,207 m2 in six avenues with an average width of 12 meters and a total length of 5.57 kilometers.  The final surface area paved was 12,193 m2.


Paving streets improved air quality and respiratory health conditions not only in Naco, Sonora, but also in the neighboring community of Naco, Arizona, which shares the same air basin. Paving also provided safer roadways for motorists and allow faster access for emergency services, such as police, firemen and ambulances.

Project Financing

Total Project Cost US 0.42M
NADBank Funding US 0.42M - NADBank Loan