1st Edition

Urban Planning in North Africa

By Carlos Nunes Silva Copyright 2016

    There has been relatively little written on the history of urban planning in North Africa, despite the wealth of towns and cities in this region which date back to Antiquity. The book explores the history of urban planning in North Africa and the challenges confronting contemporary urban planning in Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, and Tunisia. It examines the transnational flow of planning ideas during the colonial period, namely through the French, British, and Italian colonial presence, and the Portuguese and Spanish influences as well, and discusses key challenges currently confronting urban planning in the major urban centers in the region. The fifteen chapters that constitute the book offer an informed analysis of the history of urban planning in North Africa, covering the pre-colonial, colonial and post-colonial periods.

    Introduction; 1: Colonial and Postcolonial Urban Planning in North Africa: An Overview; 2: Well-managed Cities: Old Regime Urban Planning Practices in Ottoman North Africa and Their Reform during the Tanzimat Era; 3: The ‘Oldest Modern’ Colonization in Africa; 4: Ceuta Circa 1930: The Construction of a Functional City in the North of Africa; 5: Urban Planning in Morocco: Historical Legacy, Approaches to Urban Policies, and Changes in Urban Planners' Roles and Practices, 1960–2010; 6: Urban Planning in Algiers in the Postcolonial Period: The Failure of Planning Instruments; 7: The Making of the Urban Environment in Constantine; 8: Urban Changes in the City of Setif, Algeria: Colonial and Postcolonial Periods; 9: Postcolonial Urban Changes of a Colonial Village: Ain Arnat, Algeria; 10: Broadening the Study of North Africa's Planning History: Urban Development and Heritage Preservation in Protectorate-era and Postcolonial Tunis; 11: Heritage Preservation and Contemporary Production in Northern Africa Towns; 12: Maritime Ports as the Testing Field for a New Urbanity: Centroprojekt Zagreb Design for Naval Base Homs, Libya, 1976; 13: Chase Over the Nile: The Social Evolution of the Riverine Landscape in Urban Egypt; 14: Compromising Spatial Quality: Modernity in the Era of National State Building in Cairo; 15: British Planning Schemes for Alexandria and Its Region, 1834–1958


    Carlos Nunes Silva, PhD, is Professor Auxiliar at the Institute of Geography and Spatial Planning, University of Lisbon, Portugal. His research interests are mainly focused on local government policies, history and theory of urban planning, urban and metropolitan governance, urban planning ethics, urban planning in Africa, research methods, local e-government, and urban e-planning.

    ’This volume is the first to survey the urban planning practices and policies of the northern African subcontinent, from Portuguese and Ottoman times to post-independence. Rather than attempting to discern homogeneity and continuity in the planning experiences across this vast region over so many centuries, the contributing authors discuss the varied ways in which these cities have been built. What emerges from these pages is an understanding of how local, colonial, national and international actors have shaped North Africa’s cities.’ Eric Ross, Al Akhawayn University, Morocco ’In times of increased interest in North Africa, this book offers variegated insights into the history and present tendencies of urban planning in the region. Nunes Silva presents a diverse and stimulating collection of articles that offer overview perspectives and original case-studies and will enrich ongoing discussions among scholars and planning professionals.’ Vittoria Capresi, Vienna University of Technology, Austria