The next three to few years may see Nairobi West and South B estates eaten out by the emerging concrete jungle movement as developers continue to announce a trail of multi-story residential, studio apartments and commercial building projects to be completed in the estate over the next two years.
Nairobi West estate, traditionally a backyard for single family residentials, has been undergoing a land use transformation mainly resulting from its proximity to the CBD. An increasing number of institutional and commercial developments have emerged, pushing the area to more of a mixed-use zone.
Along with the neighbouring South B estate, also a darling of investors for multi-stories and studio apartments in recent years, the two locations are gradually loosing the touch of the old reserved residential neighbourhoods they once were. The trend is more pronounced in the areas adjacent to major city roads like Mombasa road and Lang’ata road.
Recent regulatory fillings show a proposal by a developer , Laser Freight Limited, to construct a twelve-level residential apartment comprising 143 studio apartments there. Another filing done at NEMA earlier in 2018, showed another developer seeking to put up 176 studio apartments in the neighbouring South B estate.
Although developers have also expressed interest in building studio apartments elsewhere in the city’s estates, the Nairobi West and South B are no doubt some of the favourite locations with some of the early inhabitants cashing out to make a switch to more upmarket locations or less dense locations on the city’s urban fringe.
From a residential area with a mixture of middle and low-density housing, Nairobi West has grown to be characterized with mixed uses. Although most of the new developments have been maintained at low levels, the trend appears to be changing with developers constructing multiple story buildings mostly consisting of residential and commercial types.
Most of the new developers are applying for a change of use from single dwellings to multiple dwelling residential apartments at the Nairobi City County Government, in order to maximize the return on their investments.