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The Water Lab of Africa


2020 - Shenzhen-Hong Kong, China

The Water Lab of Africa

Year: 2023
Location: Abidjan, Ivory Coast
Area: 0.5km²
Contribution: Masterplan and Urban Design

Commissioned by the Ministry of Tourism of Côte d’Ivoire, Tekuma Frenchman was tasked with creating a visionary master plan for the Baie de Cocodie area in Abidjan. The project, covering 50 hectares, needed a fresh approach after previous designs failed to align with the national vision of a “Living Room of Africa.”

Over the span of eight weeks, Tekuma Frenchman crafted a plan that integrates vibrant public waterfront areas with places for leisure, living, and learning. The Baie de Cocody will be a blue engine of economic development, sustainability, and community life.

A key element of the redevelopment is the Pont de Cocody, inaugurated in August 2023. Recognized as one of Africa’s largest bridges, it symbolizes national pride. To enhance its significance, the design includes circular thematic areas along the waterfront, serving as dynamic gateways that connect the city back to its aquatic roots. The circles were inspired by vernacular patterns, and symbolized places for people to come together by the water. Each features exciting attractions such as a floating museum with a ferry pier, an eco-friendly tidal basin, an observation tower adjacent to the new bridge, a wetland park, and a pedestrian bridge linking to the city’s cathedral.

The plan also envisions a dynamic mix of hotels, offices, retail spaces, a convention center, a technical campus, and residential units, ensuring the area becomes a global coastal destination that embodies the rich outdoor public life of Côte d’Ivoire, and sets the stage become the Water Lab of Africa.