The tramway, taken into use in Rabat in 2011 and in Casablanca in 2012, is intended as a means of ensuring social inclusion and urban re-qualification, according to a policy brief published by the Policy Center for The New South (PCNS).
“The choice of the tramway as a form of urban transport is an option for urban re-qualification. The realization of the tram is an opportunity for upgrading the road network and renewing the underground networks (telephone, internet, water, public lighting, sanitation) “, states Mostafa Kheireddine, author of this policy overview, which is published under the title” The tramway as a means for urban and social inclusion “.
Thus, he continues, the programming of a tram line or a BHLS (High Level Service Bus) can become a gift for rehabilitating the routes traveled (beautification, treatment and restoration of facades, upgrading of commercial frameworks, landscape frameworks, etc.).
Through its route and the quality of the service it offers, the tram connects the various sectors of the city and contributes directly to opening the districts, notes Mostafa Kheireddine and explains that the tram through this connection provides an urban nail between the various units. of the city and brings together human settlements and territories.
Through this function of connecting the districts of the districts, the tram is a metropolitan facility, he clarifies, believing that this mode of transport rather than transforming the existing urban structure is grafted as a unifying element in the various units. the urban area.
Furthermore, the author of this policy brief emphasizes that the tram provides the opportunity to make parts of the city pedestrian and allow the city to have public spaces accessible to pedestrians. This is not without influence on urban animation and the fall in the accident rate.
In this sense, he noted that the built heritage of the Rabat and Casablanca city centers has been able to gain in quality and visibility thanks to the introduction of the tram. Long influenced by the creation of new city centers, city centers have received a new cure. It is enough to note the cities that have won the worldwide territorial integration bet to understand that this recapture is based on efficient and effective public mass transport that promotes social cohesion and brings human settlements closer together.
At the same time, Mostafa Kheireddine points out that it must no longer be demonstrated that mass transport as the tramway plays a role in social cohesion. “In fact, connecting families living on the outskirts with those in the Center, allowing the population to move towards administrative, university, economic, cultural and recreational activity hubs, are all forms of social integration with the tram.”
And to maintain that the tramway breaks down all physical barriers by offering human transportation conditions to people with reduced mobility. This category of population has long been excluded from urban bus transportation. This means of transportation also helps to lift the psychological and economic barriers by giving social strata access to parts of the city that are inaccessible to the low-income population.
The tramway represents an area of social diversity par excellence. It is borrowed from all social strata (senior executives, employees, workers, students, etc.). While urban bus transport has lost its intensity in terms of social and gender diversity for years, the tram, on the other hand, is attractive to women, representing 56% of users in Rabat, compared to 44% in Casablanca.
Consequently, the arrival of the tram represents an alternative for the people, deprived of choice and means, to be able to reach the various city centers of the political and administrative capital and its economic counterpart. The tram also strengthens the sense of belonging and social ties between the people of the same city.