Education / Research

Workshop atelier/terrain 2006 Mahdia (Tunisia)

In the wake of the international seminar on "Quarries in the outskirts of cities: Issues and landscape projects," held in Mahdia on 16 and 17 November 2006, WATs were held from November 18 to 25, 2006 in the city’s event hall. Under the theme "Mahdia – Quarry Landscape Project", the WAT brought together 38 students from 9 institutions of CUPEUM’s scientific network including:

  • 10 from the National School of Architecture and Urbanism (ENAU) in Tunis (Tunisia),
  • 2 from the High Institute of Agronomy of Chott Meriem (Tunisia),
  • 4 from the Department of Territorial and Town Planning at the SapienzaUniversityofRome(Italy) and 4 of the Department of Architecture (DiAR) of the same Italian institution,
  • 3 from the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at the University of Cadi Ayyad (Morocco),
  • 3 from the École Nationale d'Architecture (ENA) in Rabat (Morocco),
  • 2 from the Faculty of Agriculture and Food Sciences at the American University of Beirut (Lebanon),
  • 8 from the School of Landscape Architecture and 2 from the School of Architecture of the Faculty of Environmental Design at the University of Montreal (Canada).



Part of its "International Observatory of Peripheral Landscapes: Cities and Towns", CUPEUM’s flagship activity aimed to develop landscaping projects for quarries in the municipality of Mahdia, a territory that interfaced urban and rural contexts.

All participants - student (s) and teacher (s) - benefited from the hospitality and outstanding logistical support of the City of Mahdia. These exceptional conditions combined to the involvement and collaboration of elected officials and municipal employees generated a very stimulating work environment. It led to the completion of 10 multidisciplinary development projects (architecture, landscape architecture, urban planning, geography and tourism). All teams reported their project in a presentation exhibited at the Museum of Mahdia, evaluated by an international jury and communicated to the general public.

The opening of this 3rdWAT at the Museum of Mahdia took place before an enthusiastic audience comprised of local, national and international personalities, namely the Governor and the Mayor of Mahdia, the Canadian Ambassador in Tunisia, and representatives of the consulates of Italy (M. Mariono Foti, director of the Office of Cooperation) and Morocco (Ali Moussaoui, Minister Plenipotentiary). It began with words by Mr. Med El Mehdi Sfar Gandoura, Mayor of Mahdia, Ms. Najet Hedhly Boubaker, director of ENAU, Ms. Brigitte Colin, of UNESCO, Mr. Bruno Picard, Ambassador of Canada to Tunisia and Mr. Taïeb Aloui, Governor of Mahdia. All expressed the importance of holding such an activity, a true success story in international cooperation.

Results of the activity in Mahdia circulated within government agencies and local authorities in Tunis. Tunisian authorities already demonstrated the feasibility of a winning project. This activity clearly became an important tool for local cooperation between academia and local communities.

WAT is a unique experience of mutual learning. Under the aegis of 2 intergovernmental programmes of UNESCO Social and Human Sciences (MOST)and Ecological Sciences (MAB), and related to the World Heritage Center (WHC), this WAT results from a joint management between the National School of Architecture and Urbanism (Tunisia) and CUPEUM (Canada), a partnership with the city of Mahdia (its mayor, elected officials and advisors), an international coordination by Mrs. Lyndsay Daudier, Project Assistant at CUPEUM as well as coordination provided by the local Association for the Safeguard of the Medina of Mahdia, especially by Mr. Samir Sfar Gandoura and Mohamed Ben Youssef and the support of the Canadian Embassy in Tunisia.




38 Students


Educational team 


10 Projects


Preparatory work of the students from the School of Landscape Architecture and the School of Architecture of the Faculty of Environmental Design at the University of Montreal


Tunisia, historical perspectives, social and cultural, geographical, spatial and urban development


Mahdia, historical, spatial, urban and environmental characterization 


Additional documents 



  • First price
    "Structuré par le vide" - Project 7

    Nawel Laroui_École Nationale d'Architecture et d'Urbanisme (Tunisia)

    Sarah Mustille_School of Landscape Architecture, University of Montreal (Canada)

    George Salameh_American University of Beirut (Lebanon)
    Fabio Sgroi_Département d'Architecture de l'Université de Rome "La Sapienza" (Italie)

  • Second price ex aequo
"Le ruban fertile" - Project 10


    Giacomo Di Rocco_Département de Planification Territoriale et Urbanistique de l'Université de Rome 
"La Sapienza" (Italie)
Khaoula Raboudi_École Nationale d'Architecture et d'Urbanisme (Tunisie)

    Paulette Taillefer_École d'architecture de l'Université de Montréal (Canada)

    "Tissage" - Projet 5


    Margherita Continenza_Département de Planification Territoriale et Urbanistique de l'Université de Rome 
"La Sapienza" (Italie)
Mourad El Garci_École Nationale d'Architecture et d'Urbanisme (Tunisie)
Leila Fennich_École Nationale d'Architecture de Rabat (Maroc)

    Vincent Lemay_École d'architecture de paysage de l'Université de Montréal (Canada)


Reference documents

Photo marking by Philippe Poullaouec-Gonidec - Juin 2006