In Nairobi, there are bye laws created in the late 1970s that ensured that all land owners must lay infrastructure such as roads, sewer, water before the County planner allowed them to subdivide and sell of the plots.
These laws allow for a small percentage of the land, say, 20%, to be issued with tittle deed with the land without infrastructure to enable the land owner raise capital to lay the infrastructure.
This is the genesis of the recent NSSF issue with the Tassia land owners whereby NSSF was forced to lay infrastructure, many years after it sold the plots.
If such laws were enforced by all County planners, Kenya’s real estate would be internationally competitive, similar to USA or South Africa.
Economies of Scale.
When such laws are enforced, the cost of laying tarmac roads becomes affordable. For instance, if a land owner wants to subdivide 10 acre of land, this translates to 70 plots. By adding kes 200,000 per plot on top of his sale value, he will raise kes 14m, which is enough to tarmac 0.5km of road, for a non-heavy duty carriageway. A 10 acre plot has around 0.5 km of road.
For low cost lands, the planners can specify use of murram roads which will cost kes 3000 per m, translating to kes 3m per km. For the 0.5km, this translates to kes 1.5m. The 1.5m is devided into 70 plots =kes 22,000 per plot as an addition for the land owner to effectively lay high quality murram road.
This would go a long way in improving the living standards of Kenya’s real estate which will be a win situation fo all.
Francis Gichuhi Kmau, Architect.