Menzel Bourguiba

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Menzel Bourguiba
منزل بورقيبة
Ferryville
Town
Menzel Bourguiba - Centre-ville.jpg
Menzel Bourguiba is located in Tunisia
Menzel Bourguiba
Menzel Bourguiba
Location in Tunisia
Coordinates: 37°9′N 9°47′E / 37.150°N 9.783°E / 37.150; 9.783Coordinates: 37°9′N 9°47′E / 37.150°N 9.783°E / 37.150; 9.783
Country Tunisia
GovernorateBizerte Governorate
Population
 (2014)
 • Total54,536
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)

Menzel Bourguiba (Arabic: منزل بورقيبة, romanizedManzil Būrgībah, lit.'House of Bourguiba'), formerly known as Ferryville, is a town located in the extreme north of Tunisia, about 60 kilometres (37 mi) from Tunis, in the Bizerte Governorate.

Toponymy[edit]

The town's name translates as "House of Bourguiba", as it was named after the first president of independent Tunisia, Habib Bourguiba, in 1956. During the French protectorate of Tunisia (1881–1956), Menzel Bourguiba was named Ferryville, referring to contemporary French minister Jules Ferry and was nicknamed "Petit Paris" (Translated "Little Paris") by its inhabitants of French origin. In addition, it housed the arsenal of the French navy known as the Sidi-Abdallah, which was only handed over to the Tunisian authorities in 1962.

Geography[edit]

The town of Menzel Bourguiba is located about sixty kilometres north of Tunis and about twenty kilometres south of Bizerte, capital of the governorate of the same name. It is located in the south-west of the lake of Bizerte, on the narrow strip of land which passes between the lakes of Bizerte and Ichkeul.

An expressway connects the city to the RN8 and the A4 motorway linking Bizerte to Tunis. From Bizerte, the city is accessible from the RN11 which places it halfway between Bizerte and Mateur. In addition, the city is connected to the SNCFT railway network.

Its suburbs consist mainly of the outlying town of Tinja to the west and the Ennejah district a little further south. The Guengla beach, near which several colonial-style houses are still standing, is very popular with the city's residents. The hills of Sidi Yahya and Sidi Abdallah dominate the city.

History[edit]

The naval base, Arsenal Sidi-Abdellah in 1960

In 1897, the French government took the decision to build an arsenal on a strategic site between lakes Ichkeul and Bizerte. As the North African Real Estate Company owned a large part of the land nearby, it began to draw up plans for the town to which the company's largest shareholder, Joseph Décoret, wished to give his name.

His untimely death, even before the town was erected as a municipality, allowed the general resident to impose the name Ferryville in honour of the French minister Jules Ferry, the inspirer of the French protectorate of Tunisia.

During the Second World War, the city was relatively spared, unlike the nearby town of Bizerte, 77% of whose European quarter was destroyed by American bombing in late 1942-early 1943. However, from August 1944 to March 1945, the city suffered a plague epidemic from Morocco and then Algeria, which was contained by the French naval medical services. The official toll of the epidemic was 37 hospitalized patients, ten of whom died. The cases were distributed among the population as follows: 25 Europeans and 12 Tunisians of Tunisian origin. The victims occupy a wide variety of positions in society: 18 are foreigners in the navy (eight deaths) and eight work in the arsenal (two deaths), including two naval executives.

In 1952, the city was the scene of clashes marking the uprising of Tunisia for its accession to independence. Thus, on 17 January, one day before the arrest of Habib Bourguiba and the holding of the clandestine Neo-Destour congress proclaiming armed struggle, demonstrations broke out and were harshly repressed: the toll was three dead and around fifty wounded6. A local odonym, "Avenue du 17-Janvier 1952", recalls this event.

The name of the town, which means "house of Bourguiba" in Arabic, was given to it in 1956 by Bourguiba himself, who had just gained independence from Tunisia and the following year became the first President of the Republic. By giving this name to Ferryville, he thus underlines the return of the country's sovereignty.

However, the Sidi-Abdallah arsenal was not evacuated by the French navy until 1 July 1962. Nowadays, the arsenal has become a shipyard for the repair and maintenance of merchant ships. It also contains small manufacturing industries.

Economy[edit]

Chemical tanker in Menzel Bourguiba

Menzel Bourguiba is an important town for economic reasons. Its economy is based mainly around metallurgy. It was founded as a naval installation under French rule, because of its strategic location between two lakes: The inland Ichkeul Lake on the west, and Bizerte Lake on the east, which connects to the Mediterranean Sea by the Bizerte canal.

Its most important economic activity was the ailing state-owned shipyard. The yard has seen its workforce decline, after the high level of activity in the 1970s and 1980s, when Tunisia had a larger merchant fleet and when the Soviet Union used Menzel Bourguiba to drydock its ships. At that time, the yard employed over 1,300 people. It was bought by the French ship repair company, Compagnie Marseille Réparation in 2004 and has been renamed to CMR Tunisia Ship Repairs.[1]

Climate[edit]

Climate data for Menzel Bourguiba (1981–2010, extremes 1901–2017)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 27.0
(80.6)
27.2
(81.0)
33.5
(92.3)
34.2
(93.6)
40.4
(104.7)
46.0
(114.8)
46.6
(115.9)
48.0
(118.4)
45.0
(113.0)
40.5
(104.9)
34.0
(93.2)
27.2
(81.0)
48.0
(118.4)
Average high °C (°F) 15.6
(60.1)
16.0
(60.8)
18.0
(64.4)
20.4
(68.7)
25.0
(77.0)
29.1
(84.4)
32.3
(90.1)
32.8
(91.0)
29.6
(85.3)
25.8
(78.4)
20.5
(68.9)
16.8
(62.2)
23.5
(74.3)
Daily mean °C (°F) 11.2
(52.2)
11.3
(52.3)
12.8
(55.0)
15.1
(59.2)
19.0
(66.2)
23.1
(73.6)
26.0
(78.8)
26.6
(79.9)
23.9
(75.0)
20.4
(68.7)
15.7
(60.3)
12.5
(54.5)
18.1
(64.6)
Average low °C (°F) 7.0
(44.6)
6.9
(44.4)
8.1
(46.6)
10.1
(50.2)
13.5
(56.3)
17.2
(63.0)
20.1
(68.2)
21.0
(69.8)
19.0
(66.2)
15.8
(60.4)
11.4
(52.5)
8.4
(47.1)
13.2
(55.8)
Record low °C (°F) −4.2
(24.4)
−1.4
(29.5)
−0.4
(31.3)
1.0
(33.8)
3.1
(37.6)
8.0
(46.4)
8.0
(46.4)
10.0
(50.0)
8.9
(48.0)
4.9
(40.8)
0.0
(32.0)
−0.5
(31.1)
−4.2
(24.4)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 88.8
(3.50)
73.9
(2.91)
57.6
(2.27)
50.6
(1.99)
23.2
(0.91)
10.6
(0.42)
2.2
(0.09)
6.8
(0.27)
44.3
(1.74)
61.3
(2.41)
93.4
(3.68)
115.2
(4.54)
627.9
(24.73)
Average precipitation days (≥ 1.0 mm) 11.3 10.3 9.6 6.5 3.9 1.6 0.6 1.1 4.0 7.8 9.5 11.4 77.6
Average relative humidity (%) 83 80 78 78 75 70 68 69 75 78 83 83 77
Mean monthly sunshine hours 142.6 163.9 217.0 237.0 303.8 330.0 384.4 356.5 267.0 207.7 153.0 133.3 2,896.2
Mean daily sunshine hours 4.6 5.8 7.0 7.9 9.8 11.0 12.4 11.5 8.9 6.7 5.1 4.3 7.9
Source 1: Institut National de la Météorologie (precipitation days 1961–1990 and extremes 1950–2017)[2][3][4][note 1]
Source 2: Deutscher Wetterdienst (extremes 1901–1992)[6] Arab Meteorology Book (humidity and sun)[7]

Twin cities[edit]

Menzel Bourguiba Mayors[edit]

Period Mayor(s)
1958–1962 Ahmed Ben Hémida
1962–1980 Taïeb Tekaia
1980–1990 Mohamed Dridi
1990–1995 Kamel Dhaouadi
1995–2000 Fethi Sâafi
2000–2005 Fethi M'rabet
2005–2010 Sadok Chalghoumi
2010–2011 Jamel Eddine El Batti
2011–2018 Mohamed Arbi Mimouni
2018–2021 Slaheddine Jebari
2021–Present Salim Hraga

Celebrities From Menzel Bourguiba[edit]

Gallery[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ The Station ID for Bizerte is 11414111.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.cmrtunisie.com/
  2. ^ "Les normales climatiques en Tunisie entre 1981 2010" (in French). Ministère du Transport. Archived from the original on 19 December 2019. Retrieved 3 February 2020.
  3. ^ "Données normales climatiques 1961–1990" (in French). Ministère du Transport. Archived from the original on 21 December 2019. Retrieved 3 February 2020.
  4. ^ "Les extrêmes climatiques en Tunisie" (in French). Ministère du Transport. Archived from the original on 21 December 2019. Retrieved 3 February 2020.
  5. ^ "Réseau des stations météorologiques synoptiques de la Tunisie" (in French). Ministère du Transport. Retrieved 20 December 2019.
  6. ^ "Klimatafel von Menzel Bourguiba / Tunesien" (PDF). Baseline climate means (1961-1990) from stations all over the world (in German). Deutscher Wetterdienst. Retrieved 18 October 2016.
  7. ^ "Appendix I: Meteorological Data" (PDF). Springer. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 18 October 2016.

External links[edit]