case study

Casablanca station roof sets the scene for travellers

The historic CasaPort station has been transformed into a waterfront icon with a copper-foiled roof.
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CasaPort Railway

Challenge

Harnessing nature for durability and aesthetics

First impressions matter, particularly when you’re the gateway to a city. In redesigning the century old CasaPort station for modern travellers, AREP and G3A envisaged a light, open space that stretches out beneath a soaring columned roof. The timber deck structure needed to resist extreme temperatures and provide shelter from occasional North Atlantic storms. Quality and visual appeal were also of utmost importance as the roof is visible to guests at nearby luxury hotels.
CasaPort Railway

Solution

Working in close collaboration with the project team and the Office Nacional Chemin des Fers, BMI developed an innovative and unusual roof structure. First, a double-layer waterproofing system fits securely around large rooflights providing assured protection against the worst of the coastal climate. BMI Siplast Vercuivre S Copper foil surfaced  membranes were then layered over to provide further resistance against the saline air. When first installed the membrane is a deep grey, however, as it weathers the surface patinates to a rich almond green. This reflects the traditional roofing approaches seen on local buildings and mosques, elegantly weaving the station into its architectural and cultural surroundings.
CasaPort Railway

Results

Officially opened by King Mohammed VI, CasaPort sets the tone for the planned redevelopment of the surrounding waterfront. The coastal air has accelerated the patination of its iconic roof, creating a unique tapestry that will continue to shift and change over time. Once inside, travellers are greeted by a stylish, modern environment flooded with natural light from the rooflights. It creates a memorable location to make an entrance or, as in the cinema classic, an iconic departure.