Dominican Republic

Republic of Dominicana
Capital city Santo Domingo
Surface 48,442 km²
Population 10,090,000
Road network length 6,224 km
Length of highway network 524 km
First highway ?
Motorway name autopista
Traffic drives Right
License plate code DOM

The Dominican Republic is an island nation in the Caribbean, located on the island of Hispaniola, part of the North American continent. The country is slightly larger than the Netherlands and has 10 million inhabitants. See Dominican Republic population density. The capital is Santo Domingo.

According to ABBREVIATIONFINDER, the Dominican Republic includes the eastern part of the island of Hispaniola, and has a land border with Haiti. The country is located more than 100 kilometers west of Puerto Rico and 580 kilometers north of Colombia. The Dominican Republic measures a maximum of 380 kilometers from east to west and 250 kilometers from north to south. The country also includes some small islands off the coast of Hispaniola. The capital Santo Domingo is centrally located on the south coast, other larger cities are Santiago, La Romana, San Pedro de Macorís and Bocacanasta. The island is strongly mountainous, but there are also plenty of flat parts. The Pico Duarte is the highest point in the Dominican Republic at 3,098 metres. Unlike the virtually treeless Haiti, the Dominican Republic is still heavily forested. Parts of the Dominican Republic consist of semi-deserts. The lowest point is Lake Enriquillo, which is 40 meters below sea level. The country has a tropical climate, but precipitation varies greatly by region.

The Dominican Republic gained independence from Spain in 1865 and has been a democratic country since 1961. During the 1960s, it was restless with an American intervention to counter a possible communist state on the Cuban model. With an income of $9,000 per capita, the Dominican Republic is significantly more prosperous than neighboring Haiti, and illegal immigration is a major problem. Important economic sectors are services, agriculture and tourism.

Road Network

The Autopistas of the Dominican Republic.

The Dominican Republic’s road network is relatively well developed, and it is one of the few countries in the region with a highway network. In the Dominican Republic is 500 kilometers of highway, consisting of three highways from Santo Domingo. The longest is almost 150 kilometers long and runs to Santiago in the north of the island. The highways have names like Autopista Duarte, Autopista 6 de Noviembre and Autopista del Este. In addition, there are also autovías, which clearly have lesser design requirements and are sometimes single-lane. In Santo Domingo there are some Vía Expresso’s.

All major cities are connected by major roads, which are generally in fair to good condition. Minor roads are often in lesser condition. Heavy traffic mainly occurs in Santo Domingo, the other cities are smaller. The road network is moderately integrated with that of neighboring Haiti, with only a few border crossings. Except in the central valley between Santo Domingo and Santiago, the roads inland are winding and quite narrow. There are no big cities here either.

Autopistas in the Dominican Republic
Autopista Duarte • Autopista del Este • Autopista del Nordeste • Autopista del Coral • Autopista 6 de Noviembre • Carretera Sánchez • Circunvalación de Santo Domingo

Road numbering

The Dominican Republic is one of the few countries in the Caribbean where road numbering has been introduced, most other countries are too small for this. The road network is radially numbered from Santo Domingo, with the DR-1 through DR-4 from the capital, and the DR-5 along the north coast. Odd 2 and 3 digit numbers are typically north-south routes, while even numbers are east-west routes. However, there is no such thing as an ordered grid due to the mountainous character of the country.


Signage in the DR

The signage has similarities with what one finds elsewhere in Latin America, with green signs, white letters. The goals are in capital letters. Road numbers are consistently indicated.

Dominican Republic Location Map