University of Taroudant

The designers for the University of Taroudant have created a complex that can be aptly described asa composition of different worlds, different intimacies, and different places in one place.
IAB
  • Architects

  • Location

    Taroudant, Morocco
  • Design team

    Yassine El Aouni
  • Client

    Université Ibn Zohr d’Agadir, Compagine Générale Immobilière
  • Structural engineer

  • Civil contractor

    Entreprise Zerkdi& Fils
  • Project area

    20511 m²
  • Initiation of project

    2006
  • Completion of project

    2010
  • Project estimate

    101,793,870dHS (APPROX. 10,387,000 usd)
  • Photographs

    Fernando Guerra – FG + SG
IAB
January 14 / 2017

The designers for the University of Taroudant have created a complex that can be aptly described asa composition of different worlds, different intimacies, and different places in one place. A secular town with a strong cultural identity, Taroudant’s architectural style is an expression of the deep Moroccan South.The design relies on a set of architectural and urban principles brought to life through a conception where the inward and the outward interpenetrate; the scales vary so that the user can be one with the spaces around.


The faculty is organised around a central riad(interior garden), which hasvarious functions deployed around it,taking into account the need for proximity, orientation and views.Organised along an interior street, the riad maintains a direct contact with the amphitheatres, allowing the optimisation of the administrative staff’s traffic.
The prioritisation of the walkways follows a functional logic and is designed to optimise movement while reducing acoustic nuisances. Similarly, gateways and corridors create a second level of movement scheme thus multiplying the views and creating a dynamic space.
The scale of the riadhas been attempted to be blurred and diluted by a set of plots of various sizes, and a series of gardens that define different buildings. The architecture is of deliberately massive, opaque albeit low-rise buildings closed on the east-west direction while open towards north-south, with an architectural feature allowing natural ventilation and thermal and acoustic comfort.

The elevated structures due to their subtle resemblance to the Badgirs(wind towers), visually appear as a contemporary adaptation of the traditional wind towers though here, used only to bring in light into staircases. The cube staircases also emerge as re-interpretention of the protective earth walls of the old city of Taroudant.
 
The ochre tone of the volumes accentuates the distribution of light and shadow. The mix of nature and the inorganic elements reflects the spirit of the place and the surrounding land beyond the alleys, squares and plazas. Different architectural and landscape arrangements create a variety of environments that enrich the space for the benefit and comfort of the user’s senses.The result is a space that reflects massiveness, strength and a poetic austerity.