ESSAOUIRA || Moroccan king, His Majesty Mohammed VI on Wednesday visited the Essaouira medina, which is getting a makeover, thanks to the complementary program of rehabilitation and development of the old medina of Essaouira (2019-2023), worth 300 million dirhams.
The visit, which gives a strong impetus to the efforts to develop this area of high heritage value, testifies to the Sovereign’s constant willingness to preserve the architectural character of the city of Mogador, to promote its cultural and tourist influence and to improve the living and working conditions of its inhabitants.
It also illustrates the Sovereign’s determination to follow closely this rehabilitation project which benefits the 13,000 inhabitants of the medina and concerns 26 projects based on four main axes, namely the rehabilitation of the urban space, the restoration and enhancement of the historical heritage, the promotion of access to social services and the strengthening of the tourist and economic attractiveness of the old medina of Essaouira.
Developed in accordance with the High Royal Instructions, the complementary program for the rehabilitation and development of the old medina of Essaouira (2019-2023) has a completion rate of 16 pc and studies of 75 pc.
Four projects under this program are underway (restoration of the wall of the old medina and the Borj Bab Marrakech, renovation of dangerously run-down buildings, and rehabilitation of the port’s Sqala) and seven are in the launch phase (rehabilitation of the Dar Al Araar cooperative and the Portuguese church), construction of the “Derb Laalouj” health centre, an addiction treatment centre and a pre-school education centre, the total or partial demolition of 123 buildings and the restoration of two Zaouiyas).
Also, fifteen projects are in the study phase. They concern the redevelopment of the squares of Chrib Atay, Rahba, El Fananine, El Mellah I and II, and the car parks of the port and Bab Doukkala, the restoration of the Slat El Kahel synagogue, the rehabilitation of Kissariat Siyaghine, the renovation of 4 fountains, the construction of a youth hostel, the development of 3 tourist circuits, the setting up of tourist information points and interactive panels, the creation of a tourist information and reception centre and the reinforcement of the public lighting network.
This new-generation program is the result of a partnership between the Hassan II Fund for Economic and Social Development, the ministry of the Interior, the ministry of National Planning, Urbanism, Housing and Urban Policy, the ministry of Tourism, Handicrafts, Air Transport and Social Economy, the ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, the ministry of Endowments and Islamic Affairs, the Council of the Marrakech-Safi region, the Essaouira Communal Council and the Al-Omrane Group.
The complementary program of rehabilitation of the old medina of Essaouira 2019-2023 is part of the efforts made, under the leadership of HM the King, to preserve and enhance the old medinas in several cities of the Kingdom such as Rabat, Casablanca, Marrakech, Fez, Meknes, Salé and Tetouan.