El Gouna

I will be analyzing the marina in the Red Sea town I am currently residing in called El Gouna in Egypt. The town is fairly new, created in 1989. Where I am living, my windows face one of the many marinas in the town. Within El Gouna, there are a network of canals which allows many houses to have their own strip of beach even hundreds of meters inland. Many of these canals you see around El Gouna have stone bridges over them which you can drive over. Studying how hydraulic technology altered urbanisation patterns overtime was extremely interesting to me. The urbanisation of the the Dutch delta was influenced by natural landscape and the development of a nation state. El Gouna is a modern city, which incorporates the work of many influential European and American Architects. The city resembles architecture similar to that of the Egyptian Countryside and Nubian villages.However, this town has, on a modern level, balanced hydraulic engineering, urban planning, landscape design with different authorities and institutions at a local and regional scale. I often walk and drive over the canals. They are an integral part to the structure of this city. Humans and the design/planning/architecture of this city are deeply intertwined.

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2 thoughts on “El Gouna

  1. Your post reminded me of Venice with your description of the canal bridges and sparked my interest on future of city planning in the area. As we’ve seen, Venice has realized it problem with flooding as this year it’s created waist high waters and damaged many buildings. If the population of your town increases I wonder what measures will they take to prevent erosion and encroaching floodwater? Do they drain the canals or is their use of Egyptian and Nubian countryside housing styles allowing for more permeable land, unlike the stone streets of Venice?

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  2. El Gouna sounds like a fascinating town. It compares to Amsterdam in a lot of ways: Like the Dutch capital, El Gouna’s architecture is built to reflect the personality and culture of the people who reside within it. Yet, it also incorporates sophisticated urban planning, using canals – an integral aspect of all Dutch cities – to make the town’s terrain more varied and interesting, all while employing modern technology to regulate these canals and ensure the safety of the town’s residents. By employing advanced technologies and centralized local planning while maintaining the cultural architectural traditions of its people, El Gouna proves itself as marvelous a staple of local Egyptian and Nubian culture as Amsterdam is of Dutch culture.

    One thing you wrote reminded me of a theme in Delta Urbanism, Chapter 4. Meyer noted that the developmental processes of Amsterdam evolved in three distinct phases, the first of which was keeping hydraulic engineering as a localized matter and entrusting the safety of Dutch civilians in the hands of regional water boards. You noted that in El Gouna, urban planning and landscape design follow different authorities and institutions at the local and regional scale as opposed to a national scale. To extend the original comparison, El Gouna, politically as well as culturally, compares specifically to Amsterdam in the early 19th century.

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