The contribution focuses on an original project and an innovative approach in coastal environment: integrated tourist resort of Taghazout, both in urban and coastal areas in a context of strong water constraints.

An exemplary development and planning project that promotes a reasonable tourism development model towards socio-economic development strategy which is paying heed to preserving the environmental amenities of the area. A concerted and comprehensive approach to sustainable development is given credibility and catalyzed by the HQETM certification for sustainable planning.

HQETM certification is the only certification scheme in the world with such a wide and flexible field of application. It makes a link between a project and the communities expectations, while taking upstream phases into account and highlighting the link between area planning and urban resource allocation/design.

Economic, leisure and tourism aspects:

Given its strong appeal and its potential for development, the Taghazout Bay Resort and its 615 hectare site are designated as a Tourist Development Zone in Agadir's Coastal Urban Development Plan. Located within the rural municipalities of Taghazout and Aourir, it comprises a bay with 6 km of coastline and a beach free of facilities. The program includes tourist establishments, two golf courses, a medina, various sports academies, public and private facilities, and cooperative and residential housing.Setting sustainable development at the heart of its priorities, the resort design and development take into account the preservation of natural resources and the respect of the socio-cultural authenticity of host communities.

Social aspects, collaborations, governance:

The program, the ground-plan and the design are fully consistent with environmental and socio-economic objectives, as well as the site and area’s challenges. This project embodies the search for a new tourist development model and is part of a national and regional tourist and socio-economic development strategy. It is one of six tourist resorts planned under the Azur Plan, the Moroccan tourism strategy to 2020.This project serves as evidence of the overall management of an area development plan. SAPST (project developer) implemented the national policy and presented local stakeholders with a choice of resource allocation, design and concerted development. As a developer of a large-scale tourist destination, SAPST is committed to proactively address sustainable development concerns to ensure environmental protection, viable economic growth and equitable social progress.

Urban design, landscape, infrastructure:· Preservation of coastal area and environmental design: extremely low plot ratio (9.6%), absence of structures on the coastal strip & low building heights.· Urban design: a central Medina creating polarity for users of the resort and inhabitants of Agadir urban area designed to valorize local craftsmanship.· Creation of a bypass allowing a harmless servicing of coastal strip while preserving the structural features of regional transport.· Qualitative, non-aggressive and multi-modal process of highways and various networks.Through this case study, the paper proposes to highlight the advantages and limitations of international deployment of management system and certification of development projects, in connection with the contents and requirements of these systems in terms of governance and cross-thematic approach to social, environmental and economic issues.


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  • Received: 22 April 2015
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