Abandoned to fate by successive governments, the ancient city of Badagry has been bereft of any meaningful property investment. However recent infrastructural developments spearheaded by the Lagos State government have ignited growing interests among investors in the once docile city.
With the discovery of oil, ongoing reconstruction of Lagos- Badagry Express way, relative peaceful environment, and cheap expanse of land, the axis is heralding a robust real estate development despite the lull in the Nigerian property market. The historical city now offers a ray of hope for property investment with developers and realtors coming with different incentives to take the large chunk of the bounty.
The axis comprises of Ajara, Mowo, Badagry, and Agemowo Village is now witnessing investments in the excess of $5 billion with an avalanche of private developments.
According to experts, the recent government investments had made Badagry property market an exciting one with developments that range from both commercials, residential and mixed-use. Development experts said with the ongoing projects, the historical city of Badagry would soon become a new haven for developers and investors because of the availability of lands.
“ Lagos property market is moving towards Badagry and its environs because of its potentials arising from its status as a Free Trade Zone (FTZ) as well as the presence of several landmarks within the neighborhood, which include First Story Building, Badagry Slave and Black History Museum, Mobee Palace and a host of many historical sites”, said an estate surveyor and valuer.
According to the Chairman, Lagos Branch of Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV), Adedotun Bamigbola, the upsurge in property investments in Badagry, is triggered by huge infrastructural development in the trading route. He said, “Badagry is a huge trading community coupled with the fact that it is a historical town. There are also industries along the route, while the cost of land is comparatively low.
“Going by the publicity given to Lagos-Badagry Expressway, the area will record more boom, we have not seen anything yet. In the next ten years, it is going to be a huge economic hub, real estate will boom, other trading activities will boom, industries will do well because there is a huge opportunity for people to get cheaper land and build their industries”. He added. For an investor and Chief Executive Officer, Realty Point Limited, Debo Adejana, the boom in Badagry property market can be attributed to the rail and road projects, which now have a completion timeline.
According to him, people are now taking advantage of these developmental projects in the area. Corroborating, Director of Echostone Development Nigeria, Mr. Sammy Adigun, said investors are taking advantage of existing infrastructure done by the state, stressing that Badagry is the future of Lagos. “When you talk of Lekki 20 years ago, which is what Badagry is today, Badagry is just 10 years away.
“ The distance from Lagos airport to Badagry is 68 kilometers, while the distance from the airport to Ajah is 80 kilometer. It is just the roads, if the road is done, you would not believe how low it would take to get to Badagry, because if you travel at 1 kilometer per minute, you will be in Badagry before you can get to Ajah. “ Badagry is also a historical city, it is also just by the lagoon, hence the rental value of property in the area is going to be 10 times in the next 20 years.
“ The city has just joined the oil-producing communities, with that, the rental value you will get when people come and are looking for accommodation will be like Abuja 20 years ago, when there was nowhere to stay, and nice accommodation becomes very expensive. So, Badagry is actually the future of Lagos”, he added. A visit by The Guardian last week, also revealed huge economic activities on the axis, while the urge to invest in the zone has tripled especially with the 30 percent completion of the Lagos- Badagry Expressway.
Unlike in other parts of the state, where the authorities are discouraging the development of bungalows, the ancient city is thriving on such developments thereby offering accessible and affordable housing portfolios. Some of the current developments in the axis include the Emirates Park & Gardens, located few minutes from Badagry Heritage Museum and promoted by Adron Homes.
There is also the Badagry Homes recently unveiled Pertinence Limited, while a real estate investment company, Moabi and the Kingdom of Badagry have also signed a Memorandum of Understanding to develop affordable housing in Badagry. Under the agreement, the Kingdom of Badagry designated Moabi as its exclusive partner for the purpose of developing and subsequently executing an affordable housing plan that can be financed through domestic and international sources of capital. The Lagos State government is also partnering with the Nigerian Mortgage Refinancing Company (NMRC) and private developers to deliver 20,000 housing units.
One such partnership, which had made a huge contribution towards boosting the state’s housing stocks, is the strategic alliance with Echostone Development, a building construction firm, to deliver 2,000 housing units in three locations across the state. The firm is deploying new technology for the construction of the houses while the state provides equity in terms of land and others.
Already, this partnership has metamorphosed to the construction of 250 housing units at Idale along the Topo area of Badagry. The estate named; ‘Peridot Parkland’, which comprises 252 two-bedroom bungalows is 90 percent completed. Lagos State Commissioner for Housing, Moruf Akinderu-Fatai, said, the scheme is the first green and eco-friendly estate and would be commissioned in the first quarter of the year.
According to him, the scheme built through a joint venture arrangement with Echostone Nigeria is designed to utilize less energy for cooling and heating thereby ensuring the sustainability of the environment. He disclosed that apart from the benefits accruing to the environment through optimization of energy consumption, the project also showcases an innovative technology, which speeds up housing delivery, utilizes lesser energy and generates minimal waste from site activities.
The green estate, he said, comes with a garden and two trees each for every house, said the intervention was part of the state’s determination to provide proper decent and affordable housing for Lagosians Akinderu-Fatai pointed out that the collaboration with Echostone has shown clearly that Lagos state government will speedily meet up with its target in housing delivery thereby increasing the housing stock in the state. He revealed that the innovative technology and eco friendly designs used at Idale will soon be deployed towards the construction of multilevel structures in the urban part of the state to speedily reduce the challenges of housing deficit in those areas.
Also, the Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Housing, Mr. Wasiu Akewusola, said the joint venture arrangement was adopted to ensure timely delivery of quality and affordable houses in the state. He stressed that it is an innovative technology that is fast, safe and energy-saving.“We are pacesetters and beyond the provision of houses, Lagos State intends to continue to set the benchmark in quality and affordability in housing in the nation”, he said. In the same vein, Mr. Adigun said the energy savings level of the building is 29 percent from reduced window to wall ratio and energy-saving bulbs for internal and external spaces.
Adigun, who is a Director in Echostone Development, Nigeria, said that water savings from the houses are 35 percent from low flow showerheads, faucets, and dual flush. In addition, he stressed that 43 percent less embodied energy was saved in materials used such as in-situ reinforced concrete slabs, aluminum sheets on timber rafters for roof and situ- reinforced walls for both internal and external walls, he disclosed.
“Other ecofriendly attributes include reflective roofing, roofing overhang, positioning of the window to optimize natural light and ventilation so as to reduce the use of electric fan and light,” he said. Adigun further said the walls and structures of the homes were built using concrete for greater thermal and sound insulation.