The Grand Theatre in Rabat: the innovative approach to design processes

grand theatre rabat parametric design

The Grand Theatre in Rabat is one of the most iconic projects of the famous Zaha Hadid studio, built in the capital of Morocco and completed in 2022.

After discovering the history of the Rabat theatre and the details of the work, this article will look at the methods used to implement a particularly complex and demanding project.

Il Grand Tehatre de Rabat, recentemente concluso


Parametric design in the Rabat Theatre project

The building, constructed predominantly of concrete, has a shell of GRC panels (fibre cement) covering the entire amorphous surface with a total of 5400 panels, each one different from the other.


INCIDE Engineering was commissioned by the façade builder to develop the construction design of the envelope and supporting substructures.

The complex geometry required an innovative approach, generated through the creation of a design flow that utilised parameterisation and interoperability of the systems used.

The starting point was the 3D geometric model received from the Zaha Hadid studio and the design constraints.



The reconstruction of the geometry of the panels and their adaptation with the construction solutions developed between INCIDE and the customer was possible thanks to the use of a parametric approach developed through the design software Rhino and Grasshopper.

Generation of façade panel designs in GRC using parametric software


This synergetic methodology allowed the reconstruction of theoretical geometries and the implementation of reinforcement and fastening details in a fully automatic manner.

Similarly, the realisation of the steel substructure was modelled from self-generative criteria derived from mathematical functions and the direct connection between the geometric model and the construction model realised with the Tekla software.


Algorithmic coordination between substructure, fixings and façade panels in Tail zone


Here too, the advanced functions of interoperability were exploited for the automatic generation of panel support details.

Similarly, the construction geometries of the panels were transported into another software, Inventor, used for the production of the drawings and cam files necessary for the construction of the formwork for the GRC panels.

Every day, INCIDE is committed to developing innovative systems for solving projects and solutions alongside architects, companies and end customers.

The integration of customised solutions takes place not only across vertical disciplines, but also within the multidisciplinary range of services that INCIDE possesses and develops.