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Ethiopia sets US $2bn for integrated community development project

Ethiopia has set aside US $2bn for integrated community development project in its capital Addis Ababa which will entail 4,000 apartment houses, three star hotels and recreation centres.

The country’s Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed during the launch of the project  said that according to the master plan, 1,600 households whose current dwelling will be demolished and later on be absorbed in the proposed apartments.

The first phase of the project will have shopping malls which will be finalized in three years. It is expected to energize the economy by creating around 25,000 jobs for Ethiopians. The development project also aims to preserve the historical and communal values of the area, while ensuring the current dwellers are also beneficiaries of the development project through ownership of some of the apartment units, challenging the previous practice of displacement.

“Eagle Hills has given us US $65m that will allow us to provide housing for those 1,600 households in the new project without being displaced from where they have been living for long,” said Mr Abiy.

Anticipating an influx of foreign businesses and tourists, Eagle Hills, the United Arab Emirates firm said La Gare would be anchored by four and five-star hotels, supported by retail outlets, offices and residential buildings. La Gare will be a new commercial hub for the city offering Grade A offices and leasehold commercial property.

The projects is set to cover 360,000 square meters in the city centre, on the former site of the capital’s central train station, La Gare, from which the scheme takes its name, the development is the first foray into Ethiopia for Eagle Hills.

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One million low cost houses are set to be constructed in Kenya by the government, in the next five years. This is in a move to make housing affordable to the citizens and ease the current housing deficit.

800,000 affordable housing units over the planned one million will be delivered under public private partnerships (PPPS) while the remaining 200,000 will be social housing.

Principal Secretary for Housing and Urban Development Arch. Aidah Munano confirmed the reports during the Architectural Association of Kenya (AAK) Awards of Excellence in Architecture 2017 at Villa Rosa Kempinski, Nairobi and said that the initiative is worthy and calls for involvement of all stakeholders.

She further said that housing is one of four sectors of focus in the country’s transformational journey and the project will eventually include coming up with innovative delivery models. “The implementation of the programme calls for involvement of all stakeholders and will encompass coming up with innovative delivery models,” said Arch. Aidah.

The event brought together members of the construction industry fraternity in Kenya including architects, quantity surveyors, engineers, construction project managers, landscape architects, environmental design consultants and town planners.

Kenya currently has a housing deficit of 1.85 million houses due to rapid urbanization. The ministry of infrastructure, housing and urban development is however fast tracking the enactment of the Kenya Building Research Institute bill that will create a research organization to spearhead innovation of the latest technology to lower the cost of construction in the country.

The Architectural Association of Kenya

Architectural Association of Kenya is Kenya’s leading Association for professionals in the built and natural environment in Kenya incorporating Architects, Quantity Surveyors, Town Planners, Engineers, Landscape Architects and Environmental Design Consultants and Construction Project Managers.

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The refurbishment works being done at the Nyayo National Stadium, Kasarani Stadium and the Kipchoge Keino Stadium in Kenya will be completed in the next 60 days; this is according to Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa.

The stadiums have been under renovation since 2017 but the slowness of construction works cost the country dearly after Kenya was denied rights to host the African Nations Championship (CHAN) early this year by the Confederation of African Football (CAF). Morocco was eventually chosen to replace Kenya and host the games.

Confederation of African football cited lack of preparedness on the part of Kenya as their reason for moving the biennial tournament set aside for local based players only. The fifth edition of the continental tournament took place between 11 January and 2 February 2018.

Also, the renovations have led to the Kenyan Premier League matches to be played on some sub-standard surfaces such as the Ruaraka grounds hence inconveniencing the players and football fans.

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Zimbabwe is planning to construct low cost houses that will approximately cost US $182m. This will target civil servants and other low income earners across the country.

The Finance and Economic Development Minister, Mr. Patrick Chinamasa confirmed the reports and said that the Government will partner the Infrastructure Development Bank of Zimbabwe and the Urban Development Corporation in coming up with various financing strategies for housing development.

The planned strategies comprise of: Home Ownership Schemes, largely funded by beneficiaries; Loan Funded Schemes, where the Local Authority, IDBZ, and UDCORP identify suitable land and mobilize funding for servicing before selling the stands to beneficiaries.

This strategy will also include formalization of informal settlements, where the Government and the beneficiaries meet the cost of the required off-site and on-site infrastructure.

Additionally, In support of privately funded schemes that will eventually address the housing backlog, the Government will also create the necessary synergies with banks, genuine housing co-operatives, Councils and other stakeholders, with a view of ensuring the housing backlog is reduced.

The new houses

The new houses are set to cater for civil servants and other low income earners across the country and will go a long way in narrowing the housing backlog. This will also ensure that Zimbabweans have decent shelters now and in the future.

This project will come in handy since the potential to own a home is swiftly moving out of reach for the most part of the population. With house plan costs and building costs rising in struggling economies, it is difficult to afford a well designed and constructed home yet there is a desperate need for affordability.

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Kenya to construct four new state of the art stadiums

Kenya is planning to construct four new state-of-the-art stadiums in Nairobi County. This is in a move to address the shortage in recreational facilities for the youth in the county and also to encourage more sporting activities.

The four new stadiums

Confirming the reports was Nairobi County Executive in charge of Education and Sports Janet Ouko who  said that the four new stadiums will be set up as per Fifa standards and will be located in Dandora, Jacaranda grounds, Kariokor and Kihumbini.

She added and pointed out that the contractors have already moved to the site in Dandora where the first stadium will be constructed.

They will be 120m by 50m with ample sitting spaces set to accommodate thousands of people and include amenities such as modern changing rooms, referee rooms and restaurants.Resources to construct the stadiums will come from the Nairobi County government.

Amenities in the stadiums

Recently, the Governor for Nairobi, Mr. Mike Sonko advertised for bids for the construction of the new grounds. According to the bid documents, the contractor who has been awarded the tenders will have to ensure they have a chain-link fence, gates painted with county colour logo, plastic stadium seats which have full back-rest and water drainage holes.

Additionally, the contractor will have to put the approved artificial turf like astro turf, complete with anti-shock underlay, put up substitutes’ benches with an overhead sunshade and also fit CCTV cameras to ensure the stadiums have 24-hour security surveillance.

A football, basketball, cricket stadium and public swimming pools are equally set for construction in at least each of Nairobi’s 17 constituencies.

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Nigeria to construct 1400 affordable housing units

Nigeria is set to construct 1400 affordable housing units following a whooping US $10m committed by the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) to construct the housing units  in estates across Nasarawa State.

FMBN’s Managing Director, Ahmed Dangiwa confirmed the reports and said the project   will be implemented in phases, the first being the 100 units. Each of the six geopolitical zones in the country will have 200 units. As the units focuses on its affordability, they will also adjust to suit the local specifications.

The housing units will comprise of 3-bedroomed, 2-bedroomed and 1-bedroomed block of flats and semidetached bungalows. The prices of the housing units range between US $9000 and US $23,000.

Mr. Dangiwa added that within a six month’s time, at least 100 housing units are expected to be delivered. To ensure the success of the program, land was provided by the government.

FMBN spokesperson, Zubaida Umar said that eligible workers with a loan requirement below US $14,000 will not pay any equity contribution. Workers whose loan requirement falls at US $14,000 and US $41,000 will provide 10% equity contribution instead of the previous 20 and 30%.

Mr. Umar added that depending on the age of the beneficiary and years of service, the housing loans have an up to 30 year convenient payment plan.

Mr. Dangiwa confirmed that US $1.2m was approved by the bank to build 90 units of three bedroom bungalow for the members of Staff of Multipurpose Cooperative Society of DalhatuAraf for Specialist Hospital in Lafian through the Cooperative Housing Development Loan (CHDL).

So far, the FMBN has financed over 25,600 housing units and has issued 16,505 mortgages. The bank has plans of issuing an additional 10,726 loans towards mortgages and 15,000 housing units.

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Top ten tallest building in Africa

Although Africa is not generally known for its abundance of skyscrapers, it has undergone a building surge in many cities. A number of tall buildings has been seen growing  significantly throughout the continent over the last few decades.

The Carlton Center in South Africa has for the last four decades held the pole position as Africa’s tallest building despite not being featured even among st the top 100 skyscrapers in the world.This however will soon change following recent projects currently underway set to take away the title of buildings in Africa. The Bank of Africa Tower, in Morocco is an example of such like buildings that will set the pace in being among the tallest buildings in Africa.

South Africa ranks high by hosting five of the top ten tallest buildings in Africa including the Carlton which is the tallest, Ponte City Apartments 173m, Marble Towers 152m, The Pearl Dawn at 152m and The South African Reserve Bank 150m

Kenya also joined the top 10 group in having tallest buildings, with the completion of 31-storey Britam office tower that stands 200m tall and carries the distinction of being the second-tallest building in Africa. The building that starts at its foundation as a square rotates gracefully up to the 30th floor at 45 degrees, forming a prism with different floor sizes. It is the regional headquarters of Britam East and Central Africa. It has an office space of approximately 32,000 square metres. It will additionally be able to accommodate 1,000 cars in its swanky 12-storey car park.

1.Carlton Centre, South Africa

The Carlton Centre located, downtown in Johannesburg, South Africa, ranks the tallest building in Africa since 1973 at 223 metres with 50 floors

The skyscraper was designed by the US architectural firm Skidmore, Owings and Merrill. Construction began in 1960 by demolishing the old Carlton Hotel and the closing roads to form a city superblock and officially completed in 1974.However occupation of the Centre began in 1971.

The design of the tower matches that of New York’s One Seneca Tower in Buffalo which was completed in 1973.

Top ten tallest building in Africa

2.Britam Tower Kenya

Britam Tower, was build as a commercial tower and is owned by British-American Investments Company. the skyscraper has a maximum height of 195 metres, above ground, with 32 usable floors. It is the second-tallest building in Africa by pinnacle height at 200 m (660 ft).

The building is the international headquarters of Britam. It features a unique prismic shape that starts as an equal four sided square footprint and ends with a two sided roof with a 60 metres (197 ft) mast, containing three helical wind turbines.

Britam Tower has a total of 350,000 square feet (32,516 m2) of office space to let for commercial purposes.The building has an attached 12 storey Car Prk that can accommodate up to 1,000 vehicles which caters to its many tenants.

3. Ponte City Apartment, South Africa

Ponte City is a skyscraper in the Berea neighborhood, just next to Hillbrow, Johannesburg, South Africa. It was built in 1975 to a height of 173 m (567.6 ft), making it the third tallest residential skyscraper in Africa.

The 55-story building is cylindrical, has an open centre dubbed “the core” allowing additional light into the apartments and rises above an uneven rock floor.

Ponte City was designed by Mannie Felman who worked closely in a team together with Rodney Grosskopff an Manfred Hermer. It is also the first cylindrical skyscraper in Africa.

The building was designed by Grosskopff in such a way that it allowed light to enter the apartments from both sides through a hollow interior. The bottom entails retail stores which had initial plans of including an  indoor ski slope on the 3,000-square-metre (32,000 sq ft) inner core floor.

Top ten tallest building in Africa

4. UAP Tower, Kenya

UAP Old Mutual Tower is a 33-storey office complex in the Upper Hill neighborhood of Nairobi, Kenya owned by UAP Old Mutual Group, a financial services conglomerate headquartered in Kenya, with subsidiaries in six African countries.

The tower, which is also the second-tallest building in Nairobi at 163 m (535 ft) financed through private equity at a total of US $40,000,000 as of (2015). It has rentable space that measures 29,000 square metres (310,000 sq ft), and will also house the UAP Old Mutual Group headquarters once it is completely finished.

Top ten tallest building in Africa

5.NECOM House, Nigeria

Nigerian External Communication House (NECOM House) is a skyscraper located in Lagos by a Ghanaian architectural company, Nickson Borys, Partners and built by the British company, Costain Group, famous builders of the Dolphin Square Apartments in London and the Dubai International Airport.

NECOM House is a 32-story building, houses the headquarters of NITEL which at the top of the tower and serves as a lighthouse beacon for Lagos Harbor.  The building was completed in 1979.

Top ten tallest building in Africa

6. PSPF Tower, Tanzania

Located in the East African region, Tanzania is the Tower A and B PSPF Twin Towers standing at 153 metres (502 feet) tall with 35 floors.The buildings which have a postmodern style began its construction in 2011 and completed in 2014. The towers were officially opened for business in 2015.

This building and construction proposal was a winning design in a competition for design of a mixed urban development in the heart of Dar es Salaam City. They were built using concrete glass and steel by Hatmy Engineering.

Each floor has been well designed to accommodate shopping facilities, residential apartments, luxury hotels, cinemas halls and office spaces for rental. It has  offices, retail stores and parking garage.

Top ten tallest building in Africa

7.Marble Tower, South Africa

Located in joburg’s central business district at 499ft, the Marble Towers is a skyscraper built in 1973 and is 32 storeys tall. The building’s structure is made out of a mixture of concrete and marble and has an eight-storey parking garage attached to it. The tower is in use as commercial offices. Marble Towers is the eighth-tallest building in Africa by pinnacle height at 152 m.

8.Pearl Dawn, South Africa

Pearl Dawn is located in Durban, South Africa.It was opened in 2010 and ties with Marble Towers at 499feet with 31 floors. The residential building was marked as a lush option for residents of South Africa with a has a futurist architectural style with a dark blue facade colour.

The Pearls is a spectacular residential resort offering luxury apartments and penthouses. Construction of The Tides and Dawn were successfully carried out and recognized as one of Durban’s most prestigious Holiday Apartments attracting influential clients, as well as holiday makers.

Top ten tallest building in Africa

9.South African Reserve Bank Building

South African Reserve Bank Building was built by Burg Doherty Bryant + Partners, the South African Reserve Bank Building and is situated at number 370 Stanza Bopape Street (previously Church Street) in the nation’s capital.

The building is the tallest in Pretoria and also the the first flush-glazed glass tower block in the Southern Hemisphere. It was completed in 1988

Architects together with a specialist from the USA and input from the PG Glass Company in South Africa designed the curtain walls. The building also has a a stainless steel, non-representational sculpture “Untitled” by Johan van Heerden which was specially commissioned to complement it.

Top ten tallest building in Africa

10. Metlife Centre, South Africa

The Metlife Centre is a 28-floor, 120-metre-tall (390 ft) modernist skyscraper situated opposite the Cape Town International Convention Centre in the City Bowl area of Cape Town, South Africa.

The  Centre Tower has a 22m tall spired antenna on the building’s roof that was lifted into place by a helicopter just prior to its completion in 1993

Top ten tallest building in Africa


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US $210m Leonardo set to become South Africa's tallest skycraper

Before the end of this year, the US $210m Leonardo, in Sandton South Africa is set to become South Africa’s tallest building, replacing the Carlton Centre, a 50-storey building approximately 223 meters tall, in downtown Johannesburg.

The Leonardo, is a 55 floor mixed-use property development which stands at a height of 234 meters (768 ft.) on a 3 200 m2 piece of land, is located in 75 Maude Street, approximately 100 meters from the Johannesburg Stock Exchange in Sandton, South Africa.

Its architectural Design is a brainchild of South Africa’s Co-Arc International Architects and the building is developed by Nedbank Property Partners in collaboration with Legacy Group and JSE-listed Aveng Grinaker-LTA as the contractor.

In January this year, the Leonardo was declared by a US-based news corporation as “one of the most anticipated buildings on the world in 2019” alongside other exclusive projects like the world’s largest underwater restaurant in Norway dubbed Under and  Beijing’s new Daxing airport.
Features of the Leonardo

The development includes two levels of public areas off the street linked by an escalator to an interactive lobby space which will be home to the reception area for the 230 apartments which rise up to the 41st level, penthouse suites with their own gardens and 7 500 m2 of sectional title offices.

The building will also feature a landscaped gardens, restaurants, a bar, a crèche, a gym and a spa which will be linked by shuttle lifts directly into the parking garage.

Legacy development have bought 10 floors in the building where they plan to establish a luxury hotel in the future. Above the development floors there are eight penthouses and the Leonardo suite, reaching from the 49th to the 55th levels. In addition the building will also feature 1 900 m2 under-roof living space and 1 300 m2 of outdoor patios and gardens, with a 20 m lap pool and gym area.

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Construction works on Africa's tallest building set to commence

Construction works the tallest building in Africa,- the Bank of Africa Tower, in Morocco is set to commence in November following a consortium comprising Belgian construction firm BESIX Group, Six Construct and TGCC who received a contract to design and build the  250m-tall tower.

Othmane Benjelloun, CEO of BMCE Bank of Africa who are sponsoring the project confirmed the reports and said construction will start in November 1.It will have with a luxury hotel, offices, and apartments.

“The Bank of Africa Tower will be an emblematic building for the country. I am proud to see BESIX participating in its construction in Morocco, where it has been a pleasure to work in recent years. In the case of the Bank of Africa Tower, we can count on our solid expertise in high-rise construction.”said CEO Othmane Benjelloun.

The Bank of Africa Tower

Designed by Spanish architects Rafael de la-Hoz Arquitectos and Moroccan firm CHB Cabinet Hakim Benjelloun, the building aims for the highest international environmental standards to earn a certified LEED Gold and HQE rating.

The project is being developed by FinanceCom Group’s subsidiary O TOWER.The China Railway Construction Corporation International (CRCCI), which was originally contracted to build the tower, will continue to accompany the newly contracted companies.

The Bank of Africa Tower will be the icon of the new Bouregreg Valley development project, a major part of the program “Rabat Ville Lumiere, Capitale Marocaine de la Culture” (Rabat, the City of Light, the Moroccan Capital of Culture).

Once structurally topped out, the 820-ft Bank of Africa Tower will not only be Morocco’s tallest building but also take the crown from Carlton Centre in Johannesburg, at 732 feet currently the tallest tower in Africa.

Mr. Othmane Benjelloun estimated that the tower is expected be delivered on May 30, 2022. King Mohammed VI laid the first stone of the tower project in March last year when construction was originally launched.

About BESIX Group

Based in Brussels, Belgium, BESIX Group operates in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Oceania, primarily in the construction sector. Its achievements in this area include some of the most iconic buildings of recent decades, among them the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the tallest tower in the world, the Four Seasons Hotel in Manama, the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi, the Méridien Hotel and Nile City complex in Cairo, and the CBX and Carpe Diem towers in Paris.

BESIX knows Morocco well, having already completed the Tangier Med II port expansion and built the Mazagan Beach seaside resort. The Group’s responsiveness and its ability to quickly mobilize expertise and workforce are well known.

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Watamu beach, in Malindi Kenya is set to host the tallest skyscraper in Africa overshadowing the Pinnacle Tower in Nairobi’s Upperhill area that stands at 70 storeys and 300 metres in height and as at now is the tallest skyscraper in the continent.

The Palm Exotica upon completion will tower a height of 370 metres, and will be a 61-storey building. It was designed by Italian architect Lorenzo Pagnini and is said to be a mixed used development.

The building’s developers are investors from New York, South Africa and Italian billionaire Franco Rosco who viewed the to tower as an addition to the coastal town’s clout as a luxury tourism hub.

The Palm Exotica

The mixed use development will feature tastefully furnished residential suites, eclectic restaurants and a vibrant 24-hour casino, a good feature for coastal entertainment.

Each intuitively designed floor plan, from studios, Presidential suites, exclusive Sky Apartments and Penthouse apartments are fitted with modern appliances and tasteful furniture. Floor-to-ceiling windows and expansive balconies will have uninterrupted views of the vibrant blues of the Indian Ocean and emerald tropical treetops.

Residents will also be spoilt for choice from a host of offerings including a casino, nightclub, retail mall, theatre and cinema, state-of-the-art fitness centre, wellness spa and children’s play area as well as a 5-star hotel and its lavish facilities.

Furthermore, the tower will give its companions uninterrupted views of vivid ocean colours and the picturesque Watamu panorama.

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Chinese firm to construct industrial park in Kenya

An industrial park in Kenya is set to be constructed in Movoko, Machakos County by a Chinese Company- Erdemann Property Ltd (EPL). This is after the company submitted an environment impact assessment report to the National Environment Management Authority (Nema).

Nema approval

Nema however, through a published public statement has invited members of the public to submit oral or written comments within 30 days from the date of publication of this notice to the director-general to assist the authority in the decision making-process for the industrial park.

Erdemann is proposing to develop the park on Mombasa-Namanga road interchange and wants to develop 53 go-downs, gate house, power services buildings, office block, waste water treatment plant, landscaped gardens, drive ways, parking spaces and ancillary facilities.


Erdemann Industrial Park A

The firm’s first commercial and industrial property development Erdemann Industrial Park A is located in Mlolongo town and was opened in 2005. The development comprises of 15 go-downs covering a built-up area of 12,000 square metres.

The property is leased to tenants on a long-term basis.

In 2009, the firm also opened another park in Mavoko (Erdemann Industrial Park B) which comprises 24 units of go-downs.

Of late satellite towns like Syokimau, Mlolongo, Limuru, Thika and Ruiru have been attracting new industrial park developments, unlike the traditional zones of Industrial Area, Mombasa Road and Embakasi.

Erdemann Property Ltd is a limited Liability Company specializing in property development. EPL operates under the Investment Promotion Centre and provides decent, low-cost shelter to Kenyans by employing the latest technology to the art of building construction. They emphasize on delivery of quality and affordable housing with an unwavering dedication to clients.

EPL has built more than 2000 housing units from the year 2003 to-date, and has cultivated numerous relationships which have earned them the trust of key stakeholders in the real estate industry.

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