Lemay urban planning team wins international acclaim

February 27, 2018

Urban redevelopment plans praised by Moroccan government

Our Urban Planning team has been mandated to produce two urban development plans (schémas directeurs d’aménagement urbain, or SDAU) targeting two unique regions: the oasis-province of Ouarzazate and the coastal areas of three adjoining provinces: Sidi Ifni, Guelmim and Tan-Tan. These plans aim to establish long-term land development orientations for the next 25 years. 

This regional planning tool aims to define a common development vision, which is necessary to improve the regions’ living conditions while ensuring the longevity of their resources.


Location of the two areas of study targeted by the plans in 2018.


In collaboration with our Moroccan partners and independent experts in geography, environment, tourism and land property, the urban planning team has just submitted the first phase of the mandate, Territorial Analysis and Development Issues.

The territorial analysis revealed major issues relating to governance, such as rigid property boundaries that paralyse these territories, but also relating to land development, such as the extreme vulnerability of these semi-desert areas in the semi-desert facing climate change. 

This analysis also allowed us to identify the key issues that will impact the land development of the areas under study, such as their requalification in terms of zoning, the opening-up of enclaves through transportation infrastructure and a commitment to sustainable development. Each of these issues will be addressed as part of the second phase of the mandate, Planning and Development Strategies.   

This first stage is the result of participative workshops, numerous meetings with Moroccan officials and an in-depth study of the land. These mandates involved several Lemay professionals with complementary expertise, who delivered these important planning documents under tight deadline.

The Moroccan ministry for national land development, urban planning, habitat and policy praised the quality of our work and our organization of participatory workshops. Proud of this positive reaction, Lemay will soon undertake Phases 2 and 3, in this developing country that shows so much promise.  


Meetings with Moroccan officials and group workshop in Ouarzazate and Guelmim, June and Octobere 2017


This type of mandate showcases Lemay’s various areas of expertise, with a view to establishing an overall vision for the land,” said Marie-Claude Aubin, urban planner, Lemay principal and project director for both projects.

The documents we submitted show our thorough analysis as well as our sensitivity to the surrounding context.”


A proven and recognized approach

Lemay’s integrated planning methodology, refined over numerous mandates, is based on the principle that land planning is the culmination of a multidimensional analysis, which is itself based on a cross-analysis of quantitative and qualitative components and supported by the integration of perceptual elements. This collaborative approach follows the six principles below, working together in synergy:




(The Lemay approach) is a method that earns respect with its in-depth analysis, the relevance of each approach and above all, the respect of its deadlines,” said Mohammed Youbi Idrissi, a geographer, partner and professor in Morocco.

The Lemay signature lies in its ability to shape the future, to empower positive situational change.

In concrete terms, the approach to working on this type of mandate entails the following:

• Presentation of major economic, land planning and sustainable development trends;
• A series of participatory activities, such as:
   - Meetings with representatives;
   - Theme-based workshops with experts;
   - Group workshops building on knowledge-sharing
   - The launch of an online microsite for consultation purposes;
• The creation of new theme maps;
• The production of numerous communications documents, according to a graphic grid customized for the urban development plan.