March 2007 Creative Cities was asked by the mayor of Casablanca to participate in developing a transformation strategy for an old abattoir in the city centre. The first step was to decide upon the possible programme on this location.
In Islamic culture a lot of importance is given to abattoirs, something to keep in mind when thinking about giving new meaning and function to such a place. Meetings with local artists were arranged and an international symposium on transformation projects was held at the site, making the exchange of experience and knowledge possible. Next, a big cultural event was organized in a closed area of the building with the help of the municipality of Amsterdam.
With minimal architectural intervention, but with a maximum of enthusiasm and commitment a new meaning was given to the abattoir, making it a place to go and meet people instantaneously. The abattoir in Casablanca still needs a lot of work, but the first steps are taken.
The ghost escaped from the bottle and there is a big chance that there’s no way back.