Lemay has won the prestigious international competition to redesign the corniches of Morocco’s Casablanca coast, which include the new seaside promenade of the Hassan II Mosque and the Ain Diab corniche. Lemay’s proposal stood out with its transdisciplinary approach combining broad expertise in international development, sustainable development, architecture, landscape architecture, urban design and graphic design.
Launched by real estate agency Casa Aménagement in June of 2016, the international competition aims to enhance this exceptional natural space for the residents of Casablanca, on the edge of the thriving metropolis. New urban and landscape design will promote mobility along the length of the corniche and reinforce the appeal of the Casablanca coast in a spirit of modernity, sustainability and innovation.
The project, launched on December 20 by His Majesty King Mohammed VI, involves creating an urban public park and corniche along the El Hank embankment. Designed in harmony with its environment, the new promenade will become an extension of the Hassan II Mosque, an architectural gem and source of Moroccan pride that is one of the economic capital’s must-see landmarks.
The 5-kilometre coast will offer Casablanca residents and visitors a plethora of new and complementary uses, based around three main functions: a festive event space, a seaside resort and a nature preserve. They will be able to enjoy new rest areas, walkways, outdoor sports and spectacular views of the Atlantic, without leaving the City.
An impactful narrative: a layered sensory experience
Inspired by the classic and multi-tiered Islamic garden, our design offers a formal procession from the City to the Sea, through a series of landscaped layers. A first shaded layer defines the entrance to the promenade, as a green park traces a line between Corniche Blvd. and the shore. The next level of gardens encourages recreation and leisure, while the following levels are dedicated to walking and the beach.
Mineral and plant layers wander, meander, rise and overlap to create elegant and integrated landscapes. At street intersections, open public squares act as gates to the sea and connect services such as restaurants, boutiques, fountains, sanitary facilities and underground parking. An unobstructed view of the sea always dominates, thanks to an integration of facilities and rolling landscape.”
Sustainable development is at the heart of the Lemay approach and feature prominently in the winning proposal. Several sustainable development strategies were woven into the new urban design in order to reduce the project’s ecological footprint. Among the most remarkable is the implementation of an electric tramway as a complement to the Casablanca coast’s first-ever bicycle path.
A grey-water treatment system using bio filtering gardens has been added to the strategy developed by Lemay and Geodata. Recycling, ecological handling of waste, the use of local materials and plants as well as the revitalization of natural areas will all contribute to the creation of a sustainable environment for the well-being of future generations. Source by Lemay, Courtesy of v2com.
- Location: Casablanca, Marocco
- Architect: Lemay
- Project director: René Hubert
- Project Team: Alexandre Lapierre Bodnar, Charlotte Bourdages, Jean-Sébastien Dewez, Raphaël Ferland, Pierre-Olivier Lacoste, Sophie Lafrance, Hugo Lapierre, Alexandre Lauzon, Michel Lavallée, Audrey Légaré, Alexis Mayano-Vinet, Eloi Migneault, Réal Molaison-Houde, Pier-Alexandre Parent, Marie-Ève Piché, Karen St-Pierre, Lucie Tamine, Jean-Pierre Wang, Kevin
- Engineers: GEODATA
- Client: La Société CASABLANCA AMÉNAGEMENT SA
- Project area: 5 linear km
- Cost of work: 200,000,000 Dirhams (equivalent to $26M CDN)
- Date: start April 2017 and July 2018 end
- Images: Lemay, Courtesy of v2com