Located in the heart of Marrakech, alongside Avenue Mohamed V, the main commercial thoroughfare, this eight-hectare historic garden (or arsa) was originally created for Moulay Abdesalam, an 18th century prince, poet, writer, scholar and diplomat.
Transformation of a Garden
In 1920, under the French protectorate, the garden was extended although, during subsequent years, it gradually fell into disrepair. At the beginning of the 21st Century, the Mohammed VI Foundation for Environmental Protection decided to restore the garden and, while preserving the main features of its historical heritage, create a space showcasing the role in the modern world of advanced communications technologies.
The People and Work Involved
With the help of Jean-Charles Mazet (landscape artist) and Karim El Achak (architect), and with contributions from Maroc Telecom and various IT companies, work to restore and develop the park was started in late 2003. Some eighteen months later, following pruning of 450 mature trees, the planting of 200 palms, 680 orange, lemon and other trees and some 500 shrubs, the ‘new look’ Arsat Moulay Abdeslam garden was finally reopened to the public as a cyber park in February 2005.