Nigeria’s benchmark for innovative infrastructure and design

19 September

Alaro City, the inclusive, mixed-use city-scale development in the Lekki Free Zone, has adopted innovative infrastructure building systems that serve as a benchmark for new cities in Nigeria.

Alaro City is currently building its first 3.5km road – a four-lane, asphalt thoroughare with a four-metre median that has adopted modern best practices and delivered an efficient drainage system.

Speaking to journalists during a tour of the city, Bailey Ligtas, Alaro City’s Construction Manager, said that the road, designed by leading engineering firm Arup, is the first of four major access points from the Lekki-Epe Expressway, just metres from the gate of Alaro City.“Alaro City is also developing an independent power plant solution by connecting to a nearby gas pipeline. Water supply for the first phase is also at an advanced stage,” Ligtas said.

Launched in January 2019, Alaro City is planned as a 2,000-hectare new city located in the North West Quadrant of the Lekki Free Zone. The city will include industrial and logistics locations, complemented by offices, homes, schools, healthcare facilities, hotels, entertainment and parks and open spaces. The project is a joint venture between the Lagos State Government and Rendeavour, the largest new city builder in Africa.

In building Alaro City, Rendeavour has provided solutions to urban planning and city-building problems unique to Lagos. According to Ligtas, to ensure effective flood management Rendeavour have adopted a rain garden drainage system that not only provides a unique landscaping opportunity but ensures the development is not afflicted by open drainage systems.

Green areas, parks and open spaces at Alaro City total over 150 hectares and form part of the drainage strategy of the city via five “greenways”. These are designed to provide an area for leisure activities and also carry surface water to the lagoon.

Alaro City has gained increasing recognition for its world-class master plan and the innovation it represents in modern city building. In July, the city’s master plan won the international Architizer A+ Popular Choice Award, besting prestigious projects such as the Amazon HQ2 supersite in Dallas and the 5M project in San Francisco. In September, Alaro City was voted “Emerging Project of the Year” by at the Africa Real Estate Awards.

Odunayo Ojo, CEO of Alaro City, said the city has already sold out phase one of its residential “buy-and-build” plots, with phase two well underway, adding that several Nigerian, regional and multinational companies are building commercial and industrial facilities in the city. “Alaro City lies in the growth path of Lagos and aims to serve as a model for what a modern mixed-use city looks like,” he said. “We have partnered with renowned experts in various fields to ensure that our culture of high standards is sustained.”

The pedigree of the city’s developers, Rendeavour, has also been identified by industry experts as a key contributor to the growing success of the satellite city. Rendeavour is currently building seven new cities in Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Zambia and Democratic Republic of Congo, with over 60 industries already building their businesses at the cities and over 6,000 homes in development.