The ongoing construction of the octagon

From the outside it is not certain what structure it is that is being constructed but when finished, it would be the first of its kind and the biggest office and apartment facility to be built in Accra and by extension, Ghana.
The Octagon, as it will be called, is U-shaped, to reflect the nature of the 4.14-acre space out of which  the edifice occupies three acres. It has three major streets around it (including Independence Avenue and the Barnes Road) that lead to the central business district of Accra.

Once completed, the project, which is estimated at US$110 million and is being executed by Dream Reality Company Limited,  the developers and owners, would house 220 self-service apartments with kitchenettes for ?medium-stay people? in Accra.

According to the Managing Director of Dream Realty, Mr Karim Ibrahim, the project is a partnership between the Jamil Ibrahim Establishment, which has business interests in Beirut, Lebanon, and the Fakhry Family, owners of Interplast PVC Company.

In an interview with the Daily Graphic at the project site, he said the sod-cutting ceremony for the foundation was done in August 2011 and the edifice was scheduled to be completed in October 2014.

Extent of work done

Concrete work on the three-winged Octagon project is 99 per cent completed, while construction of a Millennium City Hall for the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) on one acre of land, estimated to cost US$3 million, is expected to commence in November 2013.

The Millennium City Hall, a public-private partnership project, is Dream Reality Company?s contribution to the modernisation of Accra, and will cover an area of 4,000m2.

Mr Karim Ibrahim disclosed that the hall, which would overlook the Kinbu Gardens, would be a three-floor building with two huge floors of parking space behind it.

He explained that the AMA Millennium City Hall would have its own entrance and compound with a wall that would separate it from the Octagon block.

Features of the Octagon An artist?s impression of Octagon when completed An artist?s impression of Octagon when completed

The five-block Octagon facility is made up of 8, 10, 12, 10 and 8 floors respectively for blocks ?A? to ?E? and has a huge six-floor parking lot that can take 1,500 cars at any given time.

It also has a central air-conditioning with chiller system; five elevators on each of the three wings for easy accessibility and floor sizes for both big and small establishments, ranging from 85 m2 to 2,000m2.

Mr Ibrahim said half of the project is taken up by parking space (two underground and four over ground), that would make it the biggest in Accra and it would also boast of a conference area covering 1,600m2 once completed.

Spaces have been allocated for shops that will cover 6,500m2 of retail with a 6.5metre height of exposure on the main roads, while a swimming pool and gymnasium will be located on the rooftop of the building.

Above the parking floors on the third floor will be a 3,000m2 of private garden that connects all the blocks together.

A helipad is also included in the design, according to Nii Lomoetey Tetteh, the officer in charge of sales who took the Daily Graphic round the project.

?The idea of the Octagon is a one-stop shop for everything,? he said, indicating that it would have banks, grocery and convenience shops, among others.

Office Space for sale

Mr Karim Ibrahim also said instead of renting out the office spaces to individuals and businesses as had been the normal practice, interested persons would be able to purchase them outright.

According to him, it is their way of ?giving opportunity to people to invest in the project,? adding that the terms are flexible so the offices could be used for clinics, bakeries, small businesses and others.

?The offices also are very, very flexible and can take care of any size of business. The minimum size of square metres somebody can buy is 85m2 for the very large office, up to a whole building or floor. Each floor is 2,000m2,? he said.

Disclosing that there was already very good demand for the open spaces in view of the project?s strategic location in the heart of Accra, he said the prices were very competitive and early purchase would give some benefits to the buyers such as they being able to rent it out later or resell to another buyer.

The managing director disclosed that a firm had already purchased half of a floor. A model office space which has already been completed is open for viewing by prospective buyers.

Security

Although the Octagon would be a public place, Mr Karim Ibrahim said it would be ensured that whoever entered the facility first reported to the consignors at any of the three entrances apart from security persons who would work in the facility.

Workforce

Over 260 Ghanaian workers are currently working on the project together with nine expatriates, while most of the subcontractors are Ghanaian companies.

Via: DailyGraphic

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