Satellite City Dilemma In Post-Colonial Morocco: A Study Of Tamesna Town, A Big Empty Residence Or A Failed Urban Settlement?

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Ali Devrim Işıkkaya
Mouad Yaakoub


Launched in 2004, Tamesna is part of ‘New Cities / Cities Without Slums Program’. The first satellite city was established to provide affordable housing to low-income residents, and a site for the resettlement of slum residents from urban Rabat, the capital of Morocco. Currently, Tamesna City is far away from meeting the criteria of a satellite city. As a result, the social housing settlement / satellite city of Tamesna as a ‘hope city – space of exceptions and expectations’ in the beginning has become a dormitory – ghost town, a city with no signs of life. This article’s objective is describing the satellite town of Tamesna case in terms of contemporary satellite city and social housing concepts as governmental ‘reterritorialization’ implementations in post-colonial Morocco. Contextually, this article aims to contribute equally to the understanding of the governmental policy implications including international (incomplete) investments (as post-colonial imperialism) to discuss the reasons behind the ‘New Cities’ social housing & satellite city policies including removing the poor from the city to a designed – designated ‘nowhere’ by creating ‘useful / useless’ Morocco once again after colonial time period in the country. The methodology of the paper is based on literature reviews, research on documents obtained from the governmental archive, observations, and interviews with stakeholders, designers, planners and inhabitants.


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