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City Hall tenants to get free apartments in renewal plan

A deal where current occupants of Nairobi estates earmarked for demolition, will get free apartments could finally unlock the city mass housing standoff.

The plan, if it sees the light of day, is likely to chop down the number of cases lodged by tenants of government and council houses who are crying foul citing non-involvement.

Urban Renewal Project for five pioneer Nairobi estates is poised for ground breaking this month after Nairobi County and the national government agreed on modalities for relocation of tenants to facilitate handing over of project sites to contracted developers.

Bids inviting contractors were floated last April where Edermann Properties, Lordship Africa, Stanlib, KCB, Kiewa Group, Directline Assurance, Jabavu Village Limited and Technofin were identified as partners for the multi-billion shillings project.

LOW INCOME EARNERS

Speaking at the just-ended Big 5 Construct East Africa Fair in Nairobi, Public Works Principal Secretary Peter Maringa said freeing up land for affordable housing would help redefine the living spaces for low income earners.

He said Nairobi’s Old Pangani estate currently accommodating 48 dilapidated housing units was among those earmarked to be piloted and will see it redesigned and developed into a 1,434 residential units.

“Other approved projects are in Eastlands, Ngara and Pangani that are set for a presidential launch soon. We are activating the entire construction value chain where approvals for designs, registration, labour resource and handing over of sites to the contracted developers is to be done,” he said.

Established in the 1950’s with the current 48 housing units, Pangani Estate once redeveloped will comprise basement parking, a borehole and a swimming pool with outdoor sports and squash courts, a gym and playgrounds.

Project designs also show a kindergarten is to be constructed on a section of the land as well as a health facility and a shopping centre.

The new projects could also redefine mass housing developments where pre-cast factory made wall panels will be key to construction unlike the traditional projects where stones are pre-dominantly used.