“The project analyses to what extent Urban Agriculture can make a relevant contribution to climate-optimised and sustainable urban development as an integrative factor in urban growth centres. Urban Agriculture is understood as every form of informal or formal agricultural production within a city, whereby in the context of urban growth centres “city” equates to the urban region.
As a phenomenon of current megacity-specific development processes, we consider Urban Agriculture to be the whole spatial dimensions and dynamics of the development process in today’s urban growth centres which lead to new hybrid and climate-sensitive forms between rural and urban space. The result is a new form of reciprocal urban-rural linkages which shape the nature of future urban development and living conditions.
The mechanisms of land utilisation and land utilisation distribution as influenced by informal developments are key factors affecting these urban-rural linkages. These factors are to be examined more closely and supplemented by in-depth studies of how contemporary requirements for sustainable, climate-optimised and energy-efficient urban development can be achieved, i.e. how can Urban Agriculture be conceived as a strategic-conceptual and spatial approach in sustainable urban growth centres and mega-regions?
The Casablanca project concerns itself with the question of Urban Agriculture as an integrated factor in climateoptimised urban development and the search for an open-space system that is adapted to the challenges confronting today’s cities.
In the current developmental processes of emerging megacities, the foundations are being laid as to whether open spaces can be preserved within cities or urban regions, and therefore contribute in the long term to the attractiveness of cities and the quality of life in them.Emerging megacities develop very dynamically, are often poly-centric, demonstrate immense spatial spread,and do no longer form coherent spatial structures. New rural-urban overlap is emerging. For this reason it is not only two distinct spheres that dovetail in a new manner, but also the city and the landscape. Sustainable and qualified urban development requires the formulation of conceptual responses to orient, structure and guide the transformation process for today’s peri-urban spaces thus offering a new understanding for this interaction between urban and landscape development.
The basic approach of the UAC- project is that a viable response to the changed spatial patterns and spatial sprawl in urban growth centers could be the concept of an urban-regional open-space structure based on Urban Agriculture matched by a conscious integration, in terms of urban development planning, of urban-rural linkages in a poly-central city. Therefore the scope of the project is an investigation based on the example of the urban region of Casablanca (”Grand Casablanca”) into how agriculture can be integrated into the urban structure and the urban development process, and how it should be configured in order to make a contribution to sustainable and climate-optimised urban development in the sense of a multifunctional infrastructure.” (text from www.uac-m.org)
images from www.uac-m.org