SPECIAL SUPPLEMENT

THE CBN SOLAR CITIES: WHEN IDEAS TURN INTO REALITY.

It has been known that housing is one of the fundamental needs of man. The others being food and clothing. Civilizations both past and present are ranked according to the level of housing attainment. In the present age, the concept of housing is fast changing into levels of attainment of environmentally friendly ones.

It is against this background that the quest to provide affordable, environmentally friendly housing estates being championed by THE CBN COOPERATIVES and their project partners raised the interest of observers in the real estate sector of the Nigerian Economy.

The CBN solar estates being constructed across the country will be the first of such housing neighborhoods that will be wholly powered by Solar Energy in Nigeria.

The project is a public / private partnership that was initiated by the CBN staff multi-purpose cooperative society limited and a consortium of private estate developers namely Geometrix Homes & Estates Ltd.

Law Quest Properties Ltd and Haria Ventures Ltd. Other partners includes The Federal Mortgage Bank, Access Bank and Maldini Construction Company Ltd. The foundation stone of the Pioneer Estate was laid in Umuahia on 6th December 2016 The CBN Solar city Umuahia occupies a land space of five Hectares. It comprises of a mix of 20 Units of Four Bedroom detached duplexes, 50 units of three-bedroom detached bungalows, 6 unit of two-bedroom semi-detached bungalows and 4 units of one-bedroom terrace bungalow, all totalling 80 housing units. Each unit will be installed with a solar/inverter power system.

When the foundation stone of the Pioneer estate was being laid, the coordinator of the CBN staff cooperative society Umuahia Branch Mr. Ogbuagu had reiterated that the idea behind building such green friendly homes with assurances of uninterrupted power supply derived from clear energy sources was an innovative idea that his co-operative society found irresistible. He had also emphasized that such a partnership as they were having with the project developers was in alignment with the policy directive of the CBN under the leadership of Dr. Godwin Emefiele.

During the said ground breaking ceremony, the managing director of Geometrix Homes and Estates Ltd Arch. Uche Uche had thrown more light into the objectives behind the establishment of the Estates when he asserted that “As an innovative focused company, we have taken care of the perennial quagmire of irregular power supply which is the bane of most urban dwellers in Nigeria. We are fully committed to the provision of super housing estate that is powered by the premium solar technology under a serene and secure environment”.

Ever since then, the construction of the Umuahia estate has proceeded apace with several sections of the estate being completed. Also, the construction of the infrastructure like roads, water system is being given added impetus. Most importantly the construction of access road from Ojukwu Bunker into the estate has started. The construction of the road has help in opening the beautiful, hilly neighborhood down to the estate, It is expected that when completed the estate will have such facilities like play ground/ park, club house,

Shopping malls, multi-use Block, crèche, Security services, water reticulation system, maintenance facilities and waste disposal system.

The building of the Enugu Solar Citywas to follow closely when construction the of pioneer estate at Umuahia had stabilized. The Enugu CBN Solar City Occupies over 14 Hectares of land and is situated at an emerging layout in the reserved residential section of Emene-Industrial district, Enugu. The Location of the estate is ideal as it is 14 minutes drive from Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Ten minutes drive from Port Harcourt- Enugu Express way thereby allowing for a quick and easy access to main destinations in and out of Enugu. The estate when finished will comprise of a mix of three bedroom detached and semi detached bungalows, four bedroom detached and semi detached duplexes, Five bedroom detached duplexes and few custom designed houses.

Each Unit will be installed with solar/Inverter power system.

The Enugu Project has proceeded according to the work plan and timetable for its execution. The State Government has given so much encouragement by promptly granting all necessary approval that has enabled the project to take off and proceed as scheduled.

The ground breaking ceremony was held on 20th June 2018 in an elaborate ceremony that had all the major stakeholders in attendance. Such stakeholders included the Executive Governor of Enugu State, Chief Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi who was represented by his commissioner for works Engr. Greg Nnaji, and the Central Bank Governor Chief Godwin Emefiele who was represented by the Enugu Branch Controller Chief Okonjo Chidozie Emmanuel.

The resolution of some of the lingering problems on ground in the project site is also one of the major milestones that has been recorded in the execution of the project. One of such problems was the relocation of the thriving Fulani community that has settled there for over two decades. A process of dialogue was initiated between the Fulani Community Leaders, the project developers and the CBN Cooperative Society Officials with the State Government intervening as an intermediary. The relocation was a huge success as there was no case of violence or clashes as is usually the case in the relationships between Fulani communities and other parties. Since the mobilization stated in July 2018, The site has been a bee-hive of activities, Several aspects of construction in the estate has either been completed or is at an advanced stage. Such works include clearing of the site and roadways, drainages, perimeter surveys, land percellation, site and topographical survey. This is just as the construction of the fence covering the entire land space of 14 hectares has also been completed. Other aspect of the work that has either reached advance stage or is entirely completed includes water reservoir and reticulation, external lightening, streetlight Installations. The construction of the building units commenced on the 15th of may 2019.

The resolution of some of the lingering problems on ground in the project site is also one of the major milestones that has been recorded in the execution of the project. One of such problems was the relocation of the thriving Fulani community that has settled there for over two decades. A process of dialogue was initiated between the Fulani Community Leaders, the project developers and the CBN Cooperative Society Officials with the State Government intervening as an intermediary. The relocation was a huge success as there was no case of violence or clashes as is usually the case in the relationships between Fulani communities and other parties. Since the mobilization stated in July 2018, The site has been a bee-hive of activities, Several aspects of construction in the estate has either been completed or is at an advanced stage. Such works include clearing of the site and roadways, drainages, perimeter surveys, land percellation, site and topographical survey. This is just as the construction of the fence covering the entire land space of 14 hectares has also been completed. Other aspect of the work that has either reached advance stage or is entirely completed includes water reservoir and reticulation, external lightening, streetlight Installations. The construction of the building units commenced on the 15th of may 2019.

In all, The Enugu Solar Cities is expected to house around 280 dwelling in a community that will have its own unique and established character.

These model and innovativeEco-friendly cities that is connected to the overall target of renewable energy aims to bring families (Single, Married and aged people) together in a communal way of life for an enduring sustainable development.

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