A short distance outside Casablanca, the bustling city turns into open fields, grazing animals and remnants of an industrial site. Kids run between tall, white apartment buildings where clothes hang from the windows, as adults walk to Friday prayer service at the pink and blue mosque that serves as the neighborhood focal point. Not far away, construction workers lay gray bricks as a new residential area takes shape.
Welcome to the beginnings of Zenata Eco-City, an innovative urban development project in Morocco that aims to present a possible solution to African urbanization issues and also to the broader international community, as many nations across the globe attempt to respond to growing urban populations. Developing new cities in African countries could pose a high rewarding potential where urban populations are expected to increase by 15 percent by 2030, according to the World Bank.
Zenata is a locally designed and managed city created on the basis of three fundamental sustainable development pillars: environmental, social and economic. Within this framework, designers put a focus on air quality, sewage, transport, and most importantly, job creation.