Rabat Agdal Masterplan and Train Station
Location: Rabat, Morocco
Date: 2013 Restricted Competition (Finalist)
Total Area: 14ha mixed-used master-plan including: 10.000m2 Train station and 52.000m2 commercial, 10.000m2 Hotel, 31.000m2 Offices, 36.000m2 Residential, 2.000m2 Sport facilities and Landscape
Budget: €40 million for train station, Master-plan total €120 million
AZPML: Alejandro Zaera-Polo, Maider Llaguno-Munitxa, Guillermo Fernandez-Abascal, Manuel Eijo, Charles Valla, Pep Wennberg, Javier Ponce, Nuno Pinto, Konstantinos Psomas.
Collaborators: Ardèvol. Consultors Associats
The project for the development of a new LGV Station in Rabat-Agbal will surely develop one of the future centres of urbanity in the city of Rabat, and will certainly come to represent the modern city of Rabat. The project is therefore a fantastic opportunity to produce a model for the future urbanity in the City of Rabat, but also to explore a type of architecture which will be able to represent the ancient culture of the city together with its modern development.
The masterplan has been organized in two series of discreet buildings, aligned with the two avenues adjacent to the site and creating a land reserve and an urban park at the centre of the development. In these two programmatic bands the commercial spaces, residential units and hotels are located. This layout has the purpose of responding to an optimized acoustic environmental performance as well as a comfortable urban microclimate.
Connecting the avenues at both sides of the plot, the new Station Rabat-Agbal will become in the near future one of the most important buildings in Rabat, and certainly one of the most important ones in representing the City in the eyes of visitors. Rather than trying to make a signature building, we have tried to work with the existing icons in Rabat, in order to produce something that can be identified with the traditional architecture in the city. The most important monument in Rabat is the Hassan Tower, and we thought that the future Rabat International Station should offer a distilled image of the tower, with its characteristic parallelepiped massing with a very elaborate superficial texture made with a low-relief of building parts and an earthy color. We have also wanted to capture the essence of the mocarabiya, the lattice which constitutes much of the architecture in the North of Africa and the Middle East., and to tap into the traditional use of ceramics as a building material.