The Cite de la Democratie is a 200-hectare, circular-shaped, former security zone in Libreville. The area is being redesigned to include an urban park with a large convention center (designed by Dan Wood), a banquet hall, the Presidential Palace (designed by Jeffrey Smith), separate VIP housing, a three-part animal park (primates, cats, and antelopes) and a Gary Player signature-golf course. The elevation of the terrain ranges from 5 meters to 115 meters, with a curving ridge on the high ground, and seven separate watershed contours. If the first goal is to integrate all these components into a coherent landscape plan, the second is to reflect and enhance the natural landscape and ecology of Gabon with its remarkable biodiversity: wetland, grassland, and forest. Each sector, with access roads and pedestrian walkways, has changing landscape requirements – screenings for the Presidential Palace, and viewscapes for the Convention Center. The ultimate goal is to create a network of greenways throughout the Cite while highlighting the potential of landscape urbanism and sustainable development for the greater Libreville.
The contract for the masterplan was signed in June 2013; trees have been tagged, a nursery and holding areas have been set up; we are waiting for construction at the major sites to be completed.