Urban Port

14 February 2014

Saint-Nazaire (France): Inspiration for artists: the noises and rumblings of a port at night

Full article : Le

14 February 2014

What roles for parks on waterfronts? Interview

newyork-basley_dd_2014fev06New York’s Hunter’s Point Park was severely tested by the power of nature in the form of Hurricane Sandy, and stood the test. An interview with the designer, Thomas Balsley, allows us to follow the evolution from Battery Park thirty years ago, and see the important role taken by redevelopment into parks which blend local memory with contemporary design. (© Thomas Balsley Associates)

Full article : The

14 February 2014

Aalborg (Denmark): Coop Himmelblau’s “House of Music”, being built on the waterfront, will soon be finished

Full article : (+ images, plans)

13 February 2014

Tangiers: the reconversion of the port is accelerating

cs_Tanger_dd_01vignetteLast September, King Mohammed VI officially launched the Tanger Métropole project. The project aims to make Tangiers more attractive to international travellers. That same objective is also behind Tanger Ville, the reconversion project for historic port zone, whose initial works began in 2011. The launching of Tanger Métropole was an opportunity for Morocco’s sovereign to review the state of progress of Tanger Ville. Two major aspects of the project – yachting and cruises – will show significant progress in 2014, with the partial commissioning of the marinas and the inauguration of the first stage of the cruise-ship dock expansion.

To learn more about these developments, we talked to Driss Benabad, Project Director at SAPT – the development corporation in charge of the port zone reconversion of Tanger Ville – AIVP member.

(All images : copyright SAPT)

The Tanger Ville project will position Tangiers as one of the major tourist, cultural, and events destinations in the Mediterranean. The reconversion of the 84 ha site, located in the city centre next to the Medina, is considered a unique opportunity to put City-Port relations on a new footing.
AIVP – In terms of the cruise industry, your stated goal is to receive 300,000 cruise passengers in 2016, once the reconversion is completed. What are the current numbers of cruise-ship passengers, and what is the rate of growth needed to achieve your goal?


Driss Benabad, Technical Director, SAPT: In spite of the international economic crisis, the cruise market has grown at an average rate of 3% since 2009. 2.1 million cruise passengers have visited our western Mediterranean region. On average, a cruise passenger directly spends 88 € during each stopover at a Mediterranean port. After a slow period in 2000-2003, Tangiers began to recover again – in 2004 – as a cruise destination, growing at 20.7% annually. In 2011, Tangiers received 113 cruise ships, for a total traffic of 102,500 passengers. Nationally, it is the third-ranked destination, with market shares of 24% and 20% respectively, in terms of the number of ship visits and number of tourists.cs_Tanger_dd_04For rapid growth of the cruise-ship activity in Tangiers, the ideal solution would be to complete the three berths in the short term, so as to be able to receive new-generation cruise ships: a 360-metre berth, a 270-metre berth, and finally a 260-metre berth. However, for budgetary reasons, the investments have been phased in two stages:

  • Phase 1: An 80 m extension of Dock 5 attached to the main wharf, and removal of the existing RoRo ramp, giving a total length of 260 m. This phase also includes the building of reception facilities. 6.2 million € will be invested over 10 months. Works progress: 100 %
  • Phase 2: A 360 m extension of the same dock, giving a total length of 620m, which is enough dock space for the simultaneous berthing of 2 ships. This phase also includes renovation of the commercial pier. This work involves an investment of 13.4 million €, and will be executed in 2015-2016.

Moreover, the fast-ferry link to Tarifa will be maintained: 3 berthing spaces will be dedicated to this activity. The maritime terminal will be upgraded and modernized.

cs_Tanger_dd_05AIVP – All these new dock facilities are certainly necessary for receiving cruise ships and passengers, but they are not, in themselves, sufficient to attract passengers and ship services. What are the main factors that are expected to increase the attractiveness of Tangiers?

Driss Benabad, SAPT: The studies we have undertaken, and the contacts we have made with cruise companies, all indicate that the port of Tangiers has great growth potential.

In fact, Tangiers has major assets that will support the growth of the cruise industry: a unique geographic location that is ideal for both Atlantic and Mediterranean itineraries, the rich history of the city and the surrounding region, and the adequate roadways and communications infrastructure with the rest of the Kingdom.

Being so near the Medina is also an excellent opportunity to promote cultural tourism. With this in mind, our company has undertaken renovation work on the wall of the Medina and the Kasbah, as well as opening the ancient doors and access ramps.

The expected result will be to attract 300,000 cruise passengers in 2016 and 750,000 in 2020. To achieve that goal, an action plan will be launched as a complement to infrastructure development, in coordination with stakeholders in the tourism sector. This involves the following aspects:

  • Diversification of activities offered to tourists;
  • Improving tourist reception facilities at the various sites they visit;
  • Improving the current ground transportation offer;
  • Promotion and communication of the region’s tourist attractions
  • Selecting a world-class cruise terminal managing company, etc.

AIVP – The urban cable-car project has received a lot of media coverage. Why did Tangiers choose this mode of transportation, and what criteria were used for selecting the locations for the stations?

Driss Benabad, SAPT: Indeed, in order to better connect the Port with the Medina and the new urban centre, and taking into account the diversity of future users – cruise passengers, boaters, and local residents – the new port of Tanger Ville will be equipped with a cable-car transportation system.
The cable-car system will be capable of handling a flow of 2,800 passengers per hour over a total distance of 2 km. It will link the Kasbah, the cruise terminal, the marinas, and Place Faro. Apart from its public transport function, it will in itself be a tourist attraction providing a scenic view of the city, the port, and the bay of Tangiers.
Two stations will be built at the port zone, and there will be another two stations in the city.


AIVP – In environmental terms, the cable-car system enjoys a positive image. The environment is also an important component of your project. Could you tell us a little more about it?
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Driss Benabad, SAPT : Cable-cars are indeed an ecologically sound transport system. But we could mention several other such elements.
In the first place, the Tanger Ville Port Reconversion Project has received environmental certification from the national environmental impact evaluation commission. Indeed, site development activities will be environmentally friendly. For example, when the new marina is built, the sand dredged will be transported and placed at several beaches in the Bay of Tangiers.
The vegetation system in the reconverted port will consist of species adapted to the bioclimatic characteristics of the Tangiers zone.
Moreover, the emblematic buildings of the port area will be restored and reconverted, in order to maintain the present atmosphere of the port. Similarly, nearby monuments will be restored and/or enhanced.
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AIVP – What are the objectives and the work schedule for the boating component, and how much of this work has already been completed?
Driss Benabad, SAPT : The boating/yachting market offers many opportunities. The port of Tanger Ville aims to become, by 2016, the leading yacht harbour not only of Morocco but of the entire Straits of Gibraltar area, and to offer one of the best ranges of services, with a capacity of 1,610 moorings. The long-term goal is to become the mega-marina of the entire region, with 3,000 moorings. The 1,610 mooring capacity will be achieved in 3 stages:

cs_Tanger_dd_091st stage: a new yacht harbour with 1,080-mooring berths will be built near the commercial jetty. Work started in May 2011, and completion is due in late 2015. This stage represents a total investment on the order of 37.5 millions €. At January 2014, the works were 85 % completed.
cs_Tanger_dd_102nd stage: at the location of the existing yacht harbour. This corresponds to the old port’s first phase of renovation. The work has been proceeding in stages since November 2011 and will continue till late 2014 (expansion and deepening of the harbour basin, with a capacity of 100 moorings, building a new basin intended for boat repair, etc.). This stage represents an investment of 7.8 million €. At late January 2014, the works were 50 % completed.
cs_Tanger_dd_113rd stage: Once the new fishing port is commissioned, the old port’s second reconversion phase will add another 430 moorings. These works involve an investment of 12.5 million € starting in January 2015, and will be completed in late 2016.

AIVP – What are your ambitions with regard to the Mediterranean boating and yachting market?

Driss Benabad, SAPT : Studies carried out by SAPT reveal a large discrepancy between supply and demand in the Mediterranean. There are around 1000 yacht harbours in the Mediterranean. Around 90% of capacity (around 350,000 berths) is concentrated within five countries (Italy, France, Spain, Greece and Croatia) catering for an estimated fleet of 600,000 boats (sailing boats and inboard motor boats).

The region of the port of Tangiers (covering the Moroccan, Andalusian and Portuguese Algarve coasts) is home to around sixty marinas with a total capacity of 22,000 berths.The region of the port of Tanger Ville is also affected by the lack of capacity experienced throughout the Mediterranean. The region has an estimated deficit of 15,000 berths and experiences increased pressure from the yachts that pass through the straights (assessed at 60,000 per year).

Tangiers will present an integrated solution bringing together diverse services linked to ship repair, stores for the sale of boats and spares as well as nautical schools (sailing, scuba diving and yachting schools, etc.). The port will include a 20,000 m² shipyard featuring a dock with a boatlift designed to dry-dock boats of 40 metres of length. Another space with a surface area in the order of 30,000m² may be dedicated to winter boat storage.

In order to seize all the opportunities presented by the passing of yachts through the straights, 25% of capacity will be dedicated to this traffic through the short and long-term rental of berths. The rest of the berths will be dedicated to national and foreign yachters. This will attract a significant number of tourists.

In order to develop yachting in Tangiers, the following measures will be put in place:

  • entrust a specialist with the management of the marina in order to ensure that it complies with the highest international standards;
  • simplify administrative procedures;
  • ensure the highest standards of cleanliness, security and respect for the environment;
  • encourage the creation of nautical schools (sailing, yachting, jet-ski, etc.);
  • organise events in Tangiers to promote yachting: nautical shows, sporting exhibitions, etc.
  • put in place a competitive and attractive price policy covering the granting of berths as well as their short and long-term rental.

AIVP – The Tanger Ville project is not only designed to draw greater visitor numbers, but also to create a new city-port relationship and offer local residents a new quality of life. What are the main principles being adopted to ensure the integration of new facilities with the existing city?

Driss Benabad, SAPT : The master plan of the reconversion project in the port zone of Tanger Ville will allow the port to:

  • find a better balance between public and private spaces in terms of surface area and organisation;
  • boast spaces that were built based on the project’s impact on the landscape when viewed from the town as well as from the port and the bay;
  • restore and reconvert all the monuments and symbolic buildings in the port zone in order to safeguard the spirit of the area;
  • balance urban functions in order to make the site a lively and bustling destination;
  • carry out a reconversion that works in harmony with the environment.

The project’s overall surface area is 84 ha, distributed as follows:

  • Public spaces: 30 ha
  • Road space: 10 ha
  • Port facilities: 30 ha
  • Built-up area: 14 ha

AIVP – I see that a large area (30 ha) will be destined for public spaces. Was this preference for “breathing space” rather than for “densification” decided on from the start, or had other denser scenarios been initially considered?

Driss Benabad, SAPT : The initial choice was to provide the city with 30 ha of public space, in view of the lack of parks and public spaces in the city. The project considers the creation of 5 public places:
  • cs_Tanger_dd_12Place Bab Al Marsa, or “Doorway to the Port”, covering 8 hectares located along the current port entrance area, from the facade of the RENSCHAUSEN buildings and the old train station, to the Borj Dar El Baroud. Place Bab Al Marsa will be the link between the old port and the Medina;
  • Place du large: located at the end of the commercial pier between the yacht harbour and the cruise harbour. Covering 5 hectares, Place du Large will offer a panoramic view of the sea and the Medina and will serve as an ideal multi-purpose site where visitors can stroll along the water front, and where different cultural events can be held;
  • Place de la Presqu’île (the Peninsula): located along the new Marina’s protective seawall, Place de la Presqu’île will cover a total area of 2 hectares. The elevation of this area will be two meters higher than the other wharfs, and it will be built to resemble a ship’s bridge. It will include promenades, restaurants and spaces for diverse activities;
  • cs_Tanger_dd_13Le Parc du Port: This large pine grove will be the project’s green heart, located from the old port’s new basin to the new yacht harbour, on 3 hectares;
  • Place of the Mosque, which will cover 1.5 hectares around the Great Mosque. This esplanade serves to connect the fishing port area with the rest of the project. This space will be the first stopping point for cruise passengers disembarking at the port of Tangiers.

cs_Tanger_dd_14AIVP – The new office space and residential space have been grouped mostly on a large pier. Why was that?

Driss Benabad, SAPT : The urban project of the Tanger Ville Port Zone will include the construction of office space (20,000 m²) as well as high-end residential space (80,000 m²). The creation of this component aims to turn this site into a dynamic living space, where people can live, work, and have fun.

With a view to maintaining a coherent urban design and preserve public spaces, this component was consolidated into a large pier, which is located next to the modern city centre, in perfect coordination with hotel services.

The large pier is located between the two marina basins and will be an ideal residential location for boaters, either for permanent residence or in transit.

cs_Tanger_dd_15cs_Tanger_dd_16AIVP – Would you say that these new developments will be a complement to, rather that competition for, the existing attractions?

Driss Benabad, SAPT : The scarcity of available real estate in the city – including the Medina – the disorganization of commercial activity in the city, and the potential number of customers in Tangiers, are all factors that prompted SAPT to propose an integrated project to complement the existing offer in the city.

The “commerce & animation” component of the project has two sub-components:

  • A large, world-class commercial centre, approximately 30,000 m² in size;
  • Ground-floor stores and boutiques covering about 20,000 m², and including:
    • Brand-name stores and the corresponding furnishings, etc.
    • Showrooms offering yachts and nautical sports equipment;
    • Cafés, restaurants and entertainment venues;
    • Arts and crafts stores, agencies, and services.
The commercial component of the project will benefit from the strategic location right in the city centre, just below the Medina. It will also benefit from the relative wealth and diversity of the tourist clientele: ferry passengers, cruise-ship passengers, boat owners and captains, local Tangiers customers, as well as other national and international visitors.
Market studies undertaken by SAPT indicate that we will receive 7 million visitors per year starting in 2016, with estimates of spending potential of more than 178 million € (2 billion dirhams) per year.


AIVP – What will be the total cost of the project, and what sources of financing and types of partnership have been considered?

Driss Benabad, SAPT : The implementation and the construction activities of the Tanger Ville Port Zone Reconversion Project will be completed in late 2016. The project represents a total investment of about 579 million € (6.5 billion Dirhams). The port infrastructure was financed by the State. The real-estate component will be developed by SAPT.
Calls for expression of interest were published to select pairs of investors–administrators to develop and manage the following components:
  • Hotels and reception facilities;
  • Commercial centre;
  • Cable-car system.cs_Tanger_dd_19
Negotiations are under way with the interested parties selected for each component.

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AIVP – February 2014
SAPT is a member of AIVP
13 February 2014

London (UK): a floating viewpoint in a canal. An idea that could be reproduced in other port cities

Full article : (+ images, video)

13 February 2014

Reconverted grain silo and containers for student accommodations: an innovative combination in Johannesburg

Full article : (+ images)

7 February 2014

Valencia: the Municipality validates the plan to renovate the Juan Carlos 1 Royal Marina

valence_dd_2014fev07Approximately 59 ha will be renovated, including the port’s historic sector (“Dársena Interior”) and the facilities built to hold the 32nd America’s Cup in 2007. The same global objective (promoting urban and environmental integration) will be shared by the different users: recreational activities, boating, fishing, boutiques and hotels, training courses, cultural heritage, etc. (© Aivp)

Full article : El ; Plan Especial.pdf (oct 2013, 104 p.)

7 February 2014

Lyon: Wilmotte & Associés awarded the contract to renovate 5 hectares in “Terrasses de la Presqu’île” along the Saône River

Full article :

7 February 2014

Huelva: start of construction work aimed at the urban integration of the fishing sector in Levante Dock

Full article : Puerto de

5 February 2014

London: the cost of housing and projects along the Thames resurrect the debate between development and heritage

Full article :

Citizen Port

11 September 2019

Ship emissions: the Provence-Alps-Côte d’Azur region is set to invest 30 million euros to “reconcile ports cities with citizens”.

Full article: Le Marin

11 September 2019

New App jointly developed by 21CC Education, Port of Moerwijk and private companies wants to bring the world of logistics closer to younger generations

Full article: Port of Moerwijk

11 September 2019

The port of Berlin launches the first emission-free “pusher”

Full article: Hafenzeitung

9 September 2019

Port of Leixões will host the 6th edition of the port race on Sept. 15. The program will include also several solidarity initiative

Full article: Port of Leixões

9 September 2019

Port authority of Antwerp hosts maritime cinema sessions in the port house

Full article: Flows

9 September 2019

Port of Quebec is developing an Environmental Citizen Participation Process to gather the opinions of locals about key port projects

Full article: Port of Quebec 1, Port Quebec 2

4 September 2019

Port of Rotterdam and Hamburg are discussing coordinated action for greener harbors

Local politicians from the green and social-democratic parties are negotiating new identical green shipping regulation to avoid harming economic competition, while favoring more environmentally sustainable ports. The goal is to convince other major European ports to join the initiative.

Full article: Splash 247, Portal Portuario

4 September 2019

Port of Coquimbo awards personal development grants to workers’ family members, to empower women in the labour market

Full article: Portal Portuario

4 September 2019

Port of Motril will have a commission to discuss the relationship with the city and prepare the guidelines for the future master plan affecting urban areas

Full Article: Motril Digital

4 September 2019

Panamá Canal implements several environmental initiatives, including speed limit to protect dolphins, whales and other large aquatic mammals

Full article: Global Ports, Safety 4 Sea


Enterprise-driver Port

11 September 2019

River transport in France remains underused, despite its clear advantages

Benefits include a lower carbon footprint, extensive network, capacity reserve, storage options in central urban areas, and low negative externalities. Recent policies aimed at promoting cooperation between stakeholders along the Seine and Rhône or in the Hauts de France region are also ensuring a more consistent, dynamic approach. Isemar has taken an in-depth look at the issue.
Full article: Isemar (pdf)

11 September 2019

Africa: China is involved with 46 port projects and is starting to change its strategy on societal integration.

Full article: Flows

11 September 2019

Almeria: the dry port of Nijar is set to open in 2020, on a 270 hectare site, providing an essential resource for local competitiveness.

Full article: El Mercantil

9 September 2019

Long Beach and Los Angeles ports begin talks to intensify cooperation

The challenge is to make the City Port territory more competitive as a gateway for products arriving in the USA from Asia. This internal strategy driven by the management of both ports is reminiscent is similar to those involving Tacoma and Seattle, or the joint sports initiative between Virginia and Georgia. Géraldine Knatz, former CEO of the Port of Los Angeles and member of the AIVP Expert Committee, believes these initiatives are sensible solutions, that have become increasingly popular since the last attempted merger in 2014.

Full article: Benzinga

9 September 2019

“Navigating a changing climate”: an international survey on the effects of climate change for ports and navigable waterways

Full article: Navigating a changing climate

9 September 2019

Trucks on trains: the Cargo Beamer project in Calais announced in 2016 takes off with EU support.

Full article: Cargobeamer

9 September 2019

Piraeus: the port could develop faster with the creation of a genuine local and regional maritime cluster.

Full article : Port Economics

4 September 2019

Le Havre extends its steam network to cover more industrial sites, especially for washing tank containers. Some 43,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions will be avoided.

Full article: Paris Normandie

4 September 2019

Zimbabwe is modernising its North-South corridor to connect with other SADC countries and the Indian Ocean ports.

Full article: Africa Ports

4 September 2019

Seine ports merger: the plan is moving forward with territorial meetings and an online platform.

Full article: NPI