We are Medina Learning from Jnane Aztout

We are Medina Learning from Jnane Aztout

Summary

Learning from Jnane Aztout is a cooperative project of the University of Seville with the Moroccan public program Plan Villes Sans Bidonvilles Towns without slums in Larache Morocco The main contribution of the experience to the program is its participatory and multi agent coordination methodology The population has taken part in the decision making through workshops meetings and participation in the Monitoring of the Plan Committee According to external evaluation the local leadership

Background and Objective

Situation Before the Initiative Began: In 2005, Jnane Aztout was a shanty town of 1.46 Ha inhabited by 89 households, with a population of 152 women, 165 men and 97 minors, located next to the medina of Larache, on the slopes of the adjacent Lalla Menara cemetery. The tin-roofed houses were reached by paths of trodden earth. The town had two fountains for its supply of water, which needed to be carried to the houses, a job left mainly to the women and girls. The two informal rubbish collectors were the focus of rats and infections. The mayor of the city, a real estate developer, ordered the demolition of shanties to start a real estate development on adjacent land that he owned. The population at risk organized itself to defend its rights. Thus, the Widadiyat of Jnane Aztout emerged, with the strong leadership of Redouan Akjeje, a young school teacher born in the neighbourhood, who would play a key role in the whole process. Establishment of Priorities: The priorities were established in a participatory way with the neighbours, in workshops and assemblies, with the technical and social support of the cooperating team of the University of Seville and the non-governmental organisation, Arquitectura y Compromiso Social, ONG (Architecture and Social Commitment, NGO). The authorities responsible for the PVSB were presented with a report on the neighbourhood situation and with an intervention strategy on the following premises: 1. The right of all inhabitants to stay in the neighbourhood. 2. The right to participate in the PVSB Monitoring Committee with public actors and technicians 3. Creation of a Neighbourhood Technical Office (Oficina Técnica de Barrio, OTB) for the support of the process (funded by the cooperation of the NGO Architecture and Social Commitment, and by the University of Seville). The priorities established in the Monitoring Committee, chaired by the representative of the province, were as follows: 1. Consolidation of land tenure by registration as public land and transfer of the right to use it to the neighbours. Responsibility of the Larache Habitat Delegation with Domaine (Estate Agency in Morocco). 2. Preparation and approval of an urbanization project, land subdivision and relocation of part of the population. The Neighbourhood Technical Office carries out the proposed land subdivision work with the population and trains Moroccan technicians. It is approved by the Monitoring Committee. 3. Construction of the building of the Widadiyat headquarters and of the Neighbourhood Technical Office, whose team is funded by the cooperation program and AECID (Agencia Española de Cooperación al Desarrollo) and Foundation Caja de Arquitectos funding. 4. Basic Construction (sanitation and paving of the main street) undertaken by the public company Al-Omrane. 5. Preparation of house-by-house projects with participatory design methodology (OTB). 6. Program of the self- construction of homes with a bank of materials and technical assistance in construction. The Habitat and Development Group in collaboration with the Widadiyat and families benefiting from the program, with funding from the AACID (Agencia Andaluza de Cooperación al Desarrollo) and the Alcalá de Guadaira local government. 7. Demolition of the exterior wall and reconstruction undertaken by the municipality. 8. Complete urbanization of the neighbourhood: retaining walls, stairs, water supply and street paving, the responsibility for which is given to the Habitat and Development Group in collaboration with the Widadiyat (with AACID funding). Formulation of Objectives And Strategies: The priorities were established in a participatory way with the neighbours, in workshops and assemblies, with the technical and social support of the cooperating team of the University of Seville and the non-governmental organisation, Arquitectura y Compromiso Social, ONG (Architecture and Social Commitment, NGO). The authorities responsible for the PVSB were presented with a report on the neighbourhood situation and with an intervention strategy on the following premises: 1. The right of all inhabitants to stay in the neighbourhood. 2. The right to participate in the PVSB Monitoring Committee with public actors and technicians 3. Creation of a Neighbourhood Technical Office (Oficina Técnica de Barrio, OTB) for the support of the process (funded by the cooperation of the NGO Architecture and Social Commitment, and by the University of Seville). The priorities established in the Monitoring Committee, chaired by the representative of the province, were as follows: 1. Consolidation of land tenure by registration as public land and transfer of the right to use it to the neighbours. Responsibility of the Larache Habitat Delegation with Domaine (Estate Agency in Morocco). 2. Preparation and approval of an urbanization project, land subdivision and relocation of part of the population. The Neighbourhood Technical Office carries out the proposed land subdivision work with the population and trains Moroccan technicians. It is approved by the Monitoring Committee. 3. Construction of the building of the Widadiyat headquarters and of the Neighbourhood Technical Office, whose team is funded by the cooperation program and AECID (Agencia Española de Cooperación al Desarrollo) and Foundation Caja de Arquitectos funding. 4. Basic Construction (sanitation and paving of the main street) undertaken by the public company Al-Omrane. 5. Preparation of house-by-house projects with participatory design methodology (OTB). 6. Program of the self- construction of homes with a bank of materials and technical assistance in construction. The Habitat and Development Group in collaboration with the Widadiyat and families benefiting from the program, with funding from the AACID (Agencia Andaluza de Cooperación al Desarrollo) and the Alcalá de Guadaira local government. 7. Demolition of the exterior wall and reconstruction undertaken by the municipality. 8. Complete urbanization of the neighbourhood: retaining walls, stairs, water supply and street paving, the responsibility for which is given to the Habitat and Development Group in collaboration with the Widadiyat (with AACID funding). Mobilisation of Resources: The project has been developed enabling public and private economic resources, knowledge and capacity for organization and management, both Moroccan and of Spanish international cooperation. The Delegation of the Habitat has provided PVSB public funding for the project development and implementation of basic development, technical resources (drafting of urbanization project) and of management (land regularization). The municipality and public enterprises Al Omrane and Radell have provided technical resources and public funds for the sanitation infrastructure and the construction of the neighbourhood wall. The neighbours have provided economic resources and labour for the construction of housing and urbanization of the public space, knowledge of the participatory design process (housing and neighbourhood) and organizational and management capacity through the Widadiyat. The participation of women has been organized in their own spaces in meetings and design workshops. University research groups (ADICI, GIEST, EMCM, IIDVI) have provided expertise and participated in the social management of the habitat. The ACS and the Grupo Hábitat y Desarrollo (Habitat and Development Group) have organised funds of cooperation and have been responsible for the Neighbourhood Technical Office. The NGO Arquitectura y Compromiso Social (ACS) (Architecture and Social Commitment) provided funding through the AECID and Caja de Arquitectos Foundation. The Grupo de Cooperación al Desarrollo (Development Cooperation Group) of the University of Seville provided funds through cooperation agreements between the University of Seville and the AACID and the town hall of Alcala de Guadaira.

Actions and Implementation

Problem 1: Conflict of between the mayor of the city in 2005, (principal developer of the city, who had planned an urban development for which the settlement of Jnane Aztout was an obstacle), and the neighbours who claimed their right to remain in their own neighbourhood. The strategy deployed to overcome this obstacle was to create the triangle of social management of the habitat. First, we established a solid base of a bond of technical-neighbourly trust which resulted in a participatory diagnosis and intervention strategy proposal that we could present and defend before the authorities responsible for the Plan Villes Sans Bidonvilles (July-October 2005). The organization of the seminar-workshop "Architecture, cooperation and development: Sevilla-Larache" in February 2016, by the ADICI research group in collaboration with the Architecture and Social Commitment NGO, would provide a framework for the extension of the participatory assessment with neighbours and establish a bond of trust and collaboration with Housing Delegate of Larache and the Governor of the Province, to whom we presented our assumptions and methodology of intervention as a pilot case under the PVSB. Through the signing of cooperation agreements with the Widadiyat of Jnane Aztout and the housing delegation, we ensured the inclusion of neighbours and our cooperation group in the Monitoring Committee of the Plan Villes San Bidonvilles, with a framework document of agreed strategies. On that basis, we successfully asked the mayor of Larache to become part of the process, thereby ensuring the necessary political impetus. Problem 2: Rehousing of the inhabitants of the upper district, settled within the boundaries of the cemetery and the equitable redistribution of land to follow the criteria of the Plan Villes Sans Bidonvilles. The collaboration between the Widadiyat and our technical team allowed us to work with the affected families in workshops to find a solution that was accepted and approved by all assembled. The neighbourhood restructuring plan respected the location of the majority of the families already inhabiting the land, and relocated the rest to other plots whose surface area respected the limits of the PVSB. The Plan was approved by the Monitoring Committee and, on that basis, was carried out, and the proposed development of the district was run under the charge of Al-Omrane. Problem 3: The basic urbanization executed by Al Omrane (drainage and paving of the main street) created a situation of inequity. Neighbours of the upper and lower parts of the neighbourhood lacked paved roads, stairs of access and retaining walls upon which to support the construction of their homes. In order to resolve this problem, we decided to allocate a portion of the cooperation resources to complete the development through assisted self-construction. This decision led to conflicts in the neighbourhood, from neighbours who demanded that all the available funds be allocated exclusively to the construction of housing, but it was finally accepted and developed with great satisfaction all round. Problem 4: The decoupling of aid from the Andalusian cooperation caused the program to be organized into two phases with an intermediate period in which we lacked resources to maintain the OTB open. Neighbours who continued their construction work and finished before the second phase started were aggrieved to be excluded from the second phase. We prioritize the criterion of equity in the distribution of aid against equality, by allocating more resources to families with greater difficulties who had been unable to start or finish their work. The Widadiyat and the OTB assessed aid applications and allocated equitably. Problem 5: The public company RADELL demanded some economic conditions that were inaccessible for residents and hence water supply to the houses was blocked. The women solved the problem of the water supply to the houses in an "invisible” way. The incorporation of women into the leadership of the Widadiyat gave priority impetus to this problem. A special monographic Monitoring Commission meeting was convened to find a solution to this problem, and was attended by the rector of the University of Seville and the Consul of Spain. We agreed on tripartite funding (neighbours, municipality, and cooperation). As a participatory intervention project, the evaluation process has been continued by all the agents involved and has allowed the intervention to be reoriented whenever it has been necessary, whereby tasks are assigned to each of the partners. The final evaluation was carried out by an external consultant.

Outcomes and Impacts

· Financial: The use and leveraging of resources, including cost recovery, indicating how loans, if any, are being paid back and their terms and conditions; · Social and Economic: Gender equity, equality and social inclusion, economic and social mobility; · Cultural: Respect for and consideration of attitudes, behaviour patterns and heritage; · Environmental: Reducing dependence on non-renewable resources (air, water, land, energy, etc.), and changing production and consumption patterns and technology. E.g. Composting, recycling etc. · Institutional: Legislation, regulatory frameworks, by-laws or standards formally addressing the issues and problems that have been dealt with by a practice; Social policies and/or sectoral strategies at the (sub) national level that have a potential for replication elsewhere; Institutional frameworks and decision-making processes that assign clear roles and responsibilities to various levels and groups of actors, such as central and local governmental organisations and community-based organisations; Efficient, transparent and accountable management systems that make more effective use of human, technical, financial and natural resources. In the program, we have introduced the following innovations with respect to the PVSB applied in other neighbourhoods: aid fund for materials; criterion of equity in the distribution to prioritize the most vulnerable families and particularly single-parent households headed by women; flexibility in the commencement of building work adapted to the economic capacity of households. These three conditions together have allowed the percentage of families who have built their homes and who stay in the neighbourhood to have risen above average in the program, and in this case to reach 98%. Moreover, according to state officials, regarding the costs of urbanization, with direct management by the neighbours and the Neighbourhood Technical Office, this project has cost 50% less than the average cost of the program. Additionally, the neighbours that are participants in the development work have been employed and their family income increased. The proposed urban development and the housing projects have incorporated design criteria of the medinas and of affordable Moroccan housing. Jnane Aztout is a medina in the physical sense of the term, in contrast with the image of the orthogonal development of Western townhouses that has been implemented in all other cases. The establishment of a population census through technical-neighbourly collaboration has enabled adjustment of the reality of the neighbours who actually lived in the neighbourhood. Of the 200 inhabitants registered by the authorities as entitled to an urbanized plot, 89 families have qualified as eligible. Working with the population has assumed a saving for the administration in the provision of serviced land. Since the beginning of the process, environmental seminars have been organized for: the eradication of the two rubbish containers, attention to cleanliness in the public space, the painting of the houses, and landscaping public spaces. The Plan’s Monitoring Committee with representation from all the institutional, technical and neighbourhood actors has ensured the participation of residents, the solving of problems, and the coordination of actions among all actors. It has constituted a benchmark in Morocco for other areas covered by the PVSB.

Gender and Social Inclusivity

This experience draws on previous work in Andalusia, with the Neighbourhood Workshop of Architecture and Social Commitment (2000-2006), particularly in the case of participatory assessment and definition of urban improvement strategies that our team developed in the neighbourhood of self-construction in La Bachillera, in Seville, in collaboration with the Neighbourhood Commission and Seville Planning Office. This experience was presented to the residents of Larache and could be known firsthand by the Widadiyat leaders in Seville. In turn, the Neighbourhood Workshop has incorporated experiences of: the improvement processes of Latin American neighbourhoods, known as participants of the Mejorhabitar Program; of the Network of the Social Production of Habitat; of the Con Techos (Shelter) program; of urbanization and progressive housing work developed by the Espacio Máximo Costo Mínimo (Maximum Space Minimum Cost) team; all driven by the subprogram of Affordable Housing of the CYTED (Ciencia y Tecnología para el Desarrollo) (Science and Technology for Development) program. Expert advice from architects Carlos Gónzalez Lobo and María Eugenia Hurtado, of the Maximum Space Minimum Cost group, has, since the initial phase, played a major role in focusing the progressive consolidation project of the neighbourhood. The expert advice of the architects of the IIDVI (Instituto de Investigación y Desarrollo de la Vivienda or Institute of Research and Development of Housing) of the National North-eastern University of Argentina, Víctor Saúl Pelli and Bernabela Pelli, has proved highly useful, especially in resolving the conflicting knots of the process. The Villes Sans Bidonvilles program has incorporated lessons learnt of the project in its second edition, such as the strengthening of social support. Neighbourhood leaders from other shanty towns of Larache have taken the work of the Widadiyat of Jnane Aztout as a reference to organize local participation in the improvement of their own neighbourhoods. b) Transferred Best Practice: This section applies only to those who are submitting their practice specifically for one of the two awards earmarked for best practice transfers. A Best Practice transfer is defined as a process whereby two or more parties engage in a mutual and structured exchange to learn from one another in view of improving processes, skills, knowledge, expertise or technology for the purpose of improving the living environment. Transfers can occur within a country or between countries. They include institutionalised transfers such as City-to-City Cooperation, or may take place spontaneously. In applying for this special category of the Dubai International Awards, applicants are requested to provide the following information: · Describe how the transfer was initiated and by whom; · Describe the purpose of the transfer and what the transfer involved (staff exchanges, study tours, ad hoc technical assistance, etc.) including the involvement and facilitation of any third parties such as a training or capacity-building institution or a governmental, bilateral or multilateral sponsor; · Describe the resource and financial implications involved in the transfer including staff time, travel, transfer of funds, software or technology, etc; · Describe any adaptations required in for example, tools, methods or technology, in response to differences in social, economic or cultural aspects between the original practice and the recipients of the transfer; · Describe the results or impact of the transfer in, for example, changes in policy, management tools and methods, lasting change to the living environment; · Describe lessons learned from the transfer and what you would do differently in the event of future transfers.

Innovative Initiative

1. The creation of a bond of trust and technical-neighbourly cooperation, channelled through a Neighbourhood Technical Office (Oficina Técnica de Barrio), of interdisciplinary composition, has been prominently indicated by all stakeholders as a key to success. This learning confirms that which is learnt obtained in benchmark experiences, such as that of the Institute for Research and Development of Housing of the National North-eastern University of Argentina or that of the cooperative housing in Uruguay, one of whose pillars is provided by the support of interdisciplinary Technical Assistance Institutes that are contracted by the cooperators themselves throughout the process. The technical assistance work shows that the efficient use of resources can be multiplied, thereby giving "more for less", and should therefore be an element to be incorporated in the Plan Villes Sans Bidonvilles as in any other neighbourhood rehabilitation program. 2. The Monitoring Committees with the participation of all the stakeholders involved, especially the neighbours and the technical support team, has enabled the actions of all stakeholders to be coordinated and all the problems that have been presented to be solved systematically. This learning has been unanimously shared by all the participants involved and is transferable to any context of rehabilitation, regeneration or urban renewal. 3. Specific training is necessary for technicians involved in participatory processes and consultation for the improvement of the habitat that allows them to develop skills to build knowledge in dialogue between wisdom from different disciplines and between technical knowledge and common knowledge. Participatory methodologies and the development of the ability to integrate knowledge and concerted action are absent in the training of the various professional profiles called to configure these Technical Assistance teams. The undergraduate and graduate training in Social Production and Management of Habitat, linked to practical field work, has shown that it is possible to transfer this learning and change the "technician" focus of "compartmentalized" knowledge that is common to find as result of a formal university education.

Resources devoted to delivery

No. Title Source Author Publication Title Volume Number Date Page Number 1 Consolidación de Barrios. Jnane Aztout, Larache Universidad Nacional del Nordeste, Ed. De Manuel Jerez, Esteban 2005-2013 Edit 2 Video “Jnane Aztout” (complete version) https://vimeo.com/187415010 Password: jnaneaztout Edit 3. Video “Jnane Aztout” (cut version) https://vimeo.com/176446860 Password: jnaneaztout Edit 4. Consolidación Urbana Participativa de Jnane Aztout , Congreso Internacional: La Ciudad Viva como Urbs, Quito. Good Practice selected by la Consejería de Fomento de la Junta de Andalucía http://www.laciudadviva.org/obraspublicasyvivienda/epsa/laciudadviva/opencms/export/sites/laciudadviva/04_experiencias/Marruecos/0551_Consolidadcion_urbana_participativa_Larache_Marruecos.pdf 2009 Edit 5. Visita del Rector de la Universidad de Sevilla a Jnane Aztout. http://internacional.us.es/internacional/index.php?mact=Blogs,cntnt01,showentry,0&cntnt01entryid=183&cntnt01returnid=369 Edit 6. “Erradicar las chabolas de la mente”. Video of the process of transformation of Jnane Aztout https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SqDfDRT7qlA Youtube channel of Esteban de Manuel Edit 7. “En Construcción: Jnane Aztout, abril de 2009” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t2XnKvFHwIM Youtube channel of Esteban de Manuel

Conclusion

The Jnane Aztout project has been aligned with the Villes Sans Bidonvilles Program under the agreement between the University of Seville, the University of Pablo de Olavide and the Habitat Delegation of Larache. The PVSB is a statewide plan of municipal development that aims to eradicate all slums in Morocco. This collaboration has enabled the aforementioned methodological innovations in citizen participation and stakeholder consultation program to be introduced. These innovations have inspired performances and subsequent programs.

City

Larache

Sustainable Development Goals

Goal 11 - Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable