20 November 2018

Ethiopia: After the Launch of La Gare Downtown Luxury Complex Addis Abeba City Poised to Build At Least Four Similar Joint Projects

Photo: Addis Standard
3D design of La Gare integrated community development project.

Following the launching of the La Gare integrated community development project, Addis Standard learnt that the city government is poised to launch at least four similar joint projects in various parts of the city.

To be built by Eagle Hills, a private real estate investment and development company based in Abu Dhabi, the UAE, the construction of the La Gare integrated community development project was held yesterday in the presence of senior government officials including Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, deputy Prime Minister Demeke Mekonnen, and deputy mayor of Addis Abeba city, Takele Uma.

According to a press statement issued by Eagle Hills, the "La Gare represents the dynamic downtown of Addis Ababa, boasting one of the largest mixed-use developments in Ethiopia with over 4,000 residences." It will occupy 360,000 sqm prime land at the heart of Addis Abeba city and will provide "a unique lifestyle, hospitality, retail, commercial and leisure offering within a single integrated community in the center of Addis Abeba."

The government owns 27% of the project, which is estimated to take up to seven years to complete and cost 50 billion birr (close to US1.9 billion); it is also hoped to create jobs for 25, 000 people.

Following the launching, Takele Uma hinted in a tweet that more was to come when he wrote: "The best is yet to come."

The best is yet to come. We build the best city that can live up to its name - Addis Ababa . pic.twitter.com/Hp8Md5X7Y1

- Takele Uma Banti (@TakeleUma) November 19, 2018

In addition, the mayor wrote on his Facebook page this morning that the the city government planned to launch "similar mega" community projects, which will involve a joint venture between the government and foreign companies.

Upon inquiring on this statements, Addis Standard learnt that at least four such projects are marked for construction in various parts of the city, a source from the city administration said on conditions of anonymity.

The biggest of the four is "Addis Hillside Complex Village" to be built by yet another UAE based real estate company "on the hills of Yeka sub city". It will "occupy 645 hectares of land and is expected to cost close to US$ 4 billion," the source, who declined to name the real estate company said. "The government will own 30% of the share."

"Entoto Hill Tourism Hub" is another similar project in the making. Estimated to cost around US$1 billion, the hub is to be built by "a European real estate company which will have 50% share. The government owns the remaining 50%," our source said, adding that Takele Uma was in Europe (the UK and Germany) as well as the UAE, last week "to negotiate these projects."

Arial view of parts of Merkato

Two more similar projects are also in the making: "a 14 hectare complex near the main Exhibition Center and another 16 hectare project near Merkato", the later Africa's largest open market. However, our source refrained from providing further details on the last two projects saying negotiations were at early stages and included American real estate companies which have "exhibited real interest." "These projects are different in a way that all of them involve reintegrating communities located in each sites," our source said. Addis Standard's attempt to get more about this from the city administration were to no avail, yet. AS

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