Designing development of the Nouadhibou free zone

The Mauritanian economy is based on exports of iron ore, fishing and port activities. The government has made the Nouadhibou Bay a free zone. Created at the start of 2013, the zone extends over more than 1,000 km² and is home to a population of 100,000 which could rise to 400,000 by 2030. Egis, under its my My City by Egis banner, has been tasked with laying down a vision for the region and with expediting its development.

Duration: 2013-2030

Project overview

As part of this project, Egis is to propose a development plan for the coming 15 years via the design of an Operational Master Plan (OMP) and a Multi-Annual Development Plan (MDP).

The aim? To strengthen existing economic activity, develop tourism and service-sector functions and to design an urban development project to catalyse attractiveness for tourists and contribute to the wellbeing of the inhabitants. Bruno Blavier, Egis' manager for the contract, explains, “we began with an economic, urban, land ownership and technical analysis and then carried out the programming work and built up the OMP in such a way as to leave sufficient space for each activity, whilst drawing on the highly particular configuration of this long peninsula. The MDP allowed us to quantify and plan the different operations. We also made recommendations for a contractual and financial structure for each of them. Providing this service meant mobilising various forms of expertise: urban planning, programming, economics, engineering, and others.”

Interfacing between the different areas of expertise and the discussions within the project team forge the value of our proposals, clearly illustrating the value added brought by the My City by Egis solution.”

Our missions

Sustainable development is a determining factor in the OMP developed by Egis.

The different urban areas are legible, served efficiently by the planned reserved right of way public transport system and mix commerce with amenities for a variety of uses. The activity areas are connected to the travel nodes (port and airport) with minimum environmental nuisance. Urban growth is preferentially via increased density, whilst preserving outside areas that are important for the inhabitants.

The creation of a green belt acting as a windbreak for the city will also allow urban market gardening and livestock rearing under palm plantations, both of which are in line with local tradition. And lastly, water is at the heart of this project with the introduction of facilities for desalination and generalisation of treatment of wastewater which will then be partially used for irrigation.