Canadian architects Lemay have won an
international competition to redesign the corniches of Morocco’s Casablanca
coast and create a leisure-filled seaside promenade.
The contest was launched by real estate
agency Casa Aménagement in June 2016, with the intention of prompting a design
that can become “a landmark destination in Morocco.”
The project is intended to enhance a 5km
stretch of Casablanca’s dramatic cliffside pathways and roads, creating “a
layered sensory experience”. Lemay’s concept is based around three main
functions – a festive event space, a seaside resort and a nature preserve – and
includes rest areas, walkways, outdoor sports facilities and observation
Inspired by the classic and multi-tiered
Islamic garden, a series of overlapping landscaped layers, irrigated using a
grey-water waste system, will create a formal procession from the city to the
sea. At street intersections, open public squares will act as gates to the sea
and connect services such as restaurants, boutiques shops and underground
Sustainable development strategies woven
into the new urban design include provision for an electric tramway and the
Casablanca coast’s first-ever bicycle path.
Work on the first phase of the project, a
promenade along the Hassan II Mosque and the Ain Diab corniche, is set to begin
imminently and could be completed this year. It will extend from the mosque,
one of the capital’s best-known landmarks, as a walkway lined with attractions,
water features and light elements.
The cost of the whole 5km project has been
estimated at 200m Dirhams (US$19.4m, €18.4m, £15.8m). It is scheduled for
completion by July 2018.
Lemay are collaborating with Moroccan firm
Geodata, which specialises in topography and engineering.