When interior architect Zhor Jaidi-Bensouda was given the task of decorating and refurbishing the interior of Rabat-Salé airport in Morocco, she decided to cover the building with an openwork double skin.
The objective was twofold:
- to promote clarity and transparency in order to increase the fluidity of the passenger transit areas;
- to offer a sunshade on the southern façade to prevent the building becoming like a greenhouse.
After a feasibility study carried out with LafargeHolcim engineers, one material stood out in particular for the architect: LafargeHolcim's ultra high performance concrete (UHPC) Ductal®, chosen for the quality of its finish, its whiteness and its compliance with a traditional mashrabiya design, which requires 70% of voids. A material never used before on the African continent!
An extended airport for a better connected capital city
After 4 months of labor, 480m² of Ductal® and 382 precast elements were produced for an unparalleled result!
As well as allowing this double skin to be attached to a glazed façade, our UHPC provided a perfect response to the complex shapes of the panels, some of which measured up to 5.25m x 1.75m. The mashrabiya design of the latticework is reminiscent of the traditional star of Morocco, a country which sees itself as focused on the future - and can now demonstrate its credentials thanks to the modernity of Ductal®. This subtle architectural oxymoron combines the prestige of the Moroccan kingdom with the history of its administrative capital.
Thanks to its refurbishment, Rabat-Salé airport’s terminal 1 tripled its capacity to 1.5 million users a year, travelling to Paris, Madrid, Tripoli, Brussels and other capitals.