Millennium City defines Kaduna’s developing swanky property market, and the story of its emergence from a backwater community to a highbrow district is quite remarkable.
On May 26, 2008, then governor of Kaduna State, Ahmed Mohammed Makarfi, commissioned the Makarfi City Layout Link Bridge and Approaches in the state capital. This gave rise to what has come to be known as the Millennium City.
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Before the bridge was constructed, the area was underdeveloped. Our correspondent gathered that the houses then were built of mud and canoe was the only mode of transportation in and out of the community.
However, in 2008, then governor of the state, Arch. Namadi Sambo, revised the Master Plan of Kaduna and its sub-regions based on its growth, taking into consideration urban extensions around the city.
Today, Millennium City wears a new look with a growing population, several housing estates, shopping complexes, access and link roads.
Some of the private housing estates include Urban Shelter, Nurus-Siraj, Kagara Place, Mamadi and Ummi. There are also federal and state government estates.
With the 2018-2050 Kaduna Infrastructure Master Plan (KADIMP) implemented by the Governor Nasir el-Rufai administration, which hopes to consolidate and systematise the approach and strategy towards a coordinated and purposeful long-term infrastructure development in the state, Millennium City could become a hub for investment.
“Through the plan, we seek to develop the Eastern Sector of Kaduna city to promote the orderly expansion of the metropolis. This will include residential and commercial areas,” the governor had said. Already, the 5.73km Umaru Yar’adua road in the Millennium City, which will connect to the Eastern bypass is being constructed, this will have a multiplier effect on housing in the state.
The Marketing Manager, Urban Shelter, Kaduna, Aminu Muhammad, said the city is provided with quality infrastructure that includes asphalt roads, concrete drainage, water, and power (light) to each land.
According to him, “There are also plots for commercial purposes and common uses like green/recreational areas. They range in size from 450 square meters to 900 square meters with a flexible payment plan where subscribers can choose to pay for plots in instalments for a period up to two years if they cannot make outright payment.
“The motive of this project is to help people own their houses by easing up the acquisition of land in well-planned and government-approved layouts.”
He noted that the buildings in the estate also come with the flexibility of design such that all buyers can build any design of their choice so long as the Kaduna State Urban Planning Development Agency (KASUPDA) would grant them the building approval.
“We have an internal control mechanism that ensures that all structures to be built in the Urban Shelter Estate conform to all building regulations of KASUPDA before any construction begins,” the marketing manager stated.
He urged the government to allocate more land to serious developers with a reputation for timely completion of projects.
The Project Officer, Kagara Palace, Elisha Bagaiya, also said the project they have in the city is a public-private partnership with the government, ARBICO Plc and First Investment Development Company (FIDC), the consultants and developers. He said it is a 512 unit housing estate comprising three and two-bedroom semi-detached bungalows.
He said: “The project which groundbreaking was done in 2018, is broken into four phases. Currently, we are in phase 1 which is a total of 94 units. The whole idea is to make housing available to low-income earners.”
Highlighting some challenges, he said, “Material supply is one key thing in construction and because of the nature of the roads, it was difficult for us to get our material to site at the beginning.
“Another challenge was insecurity, but we thank the government for establishing military as well as police outposts in the area.”
He disclosed that to help the low-income earners afford the houses; there is a mortgage option to make payment easier.
The secretary, Nurus-Siraj Housing Estate, Khadija Sani, said the over 1,000 projects the company has in the city comprise 2-bedroom bungalows, 3-bedroom standard and executive bungalows, 4-bedroom bungalows and five-bedroom duplexes.
She also said there is a mortgage plan in place for low-income earners to access houses.
With the rapid development, the construction of access and link roads, Millennium City could be the most preferred real estate investment destination in Kaduna State.