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Taroudant University in Morocco by Saad El Kabbaj, Driss Kettani and Mohamed Amine Siana

Low, orange blocks grouped around courtyards deftly deal with the Moroccan climate

Taroudant is a small, fortified city rising out of the southern Moroccan desert 80km inland from Agadir. The climate presents a challenge to designers, but Saad El Kabbaj, Driss Kettani and Mohamed Amine Siana have scored a remarkable success in terms of both function and aesthetics. The 11 low blocks of their university campus surround a long riad or enclosed garden filled with argan trees, which forms an open street linking the facilities and giving views out over the Atlas Mountains. The blocks are also grouped around four subsidiary courtyards, providing more shade and cooling air. The red rendered exterior of the buildings refers to the colour of the desert and the city’s ancient walls, without being explicitly historicist, and the limited fenestration avoids excessive solar gain.

Read the University typology here


Click to view floor plans

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