Building collapse remains an undefeated opponent in the contest for sustainable development
The last 50 years have seen over 180 reported building collapse cases worldwide and still counting. In November 2021, a 21-story building collapsed in Ikoyi – a prime area of Lagos, leaving more than 40 individuals dead. 6 months after this tragic event, which put Nigeria’s spate of building collapse in the spotlight, at least 3 more cases of building collapse have been recorded in others parts of Lagos. Building collapse remains an undefeated opponent in the contest for sustainable development as every tragic story leaves a sour taste in the mouth of the talebearer and anxiety in the heart of listeners. Building collapse is not a stand-alone event but an outcome of factors like soil incompatibility, substandard building materials, infiltration of quacks, negligence of building codes and laws, disregard for the urban development plan, and poor enforcement of industry regulations. Following the recent collapse on Ibadan Street, Ebute-Metta area of Lagos, the state government has banned building structures above 3 floors within the Ebute-Metta East and West parts of the State. With more distressed buildings marked for demolition, a loss of confidence in the strength and condition of the existing housing stock might arise. Due to the ban on the development of buildings above 3 floors, a decline in the expected supply of housing units is imminent, further straining existing housing units with landlords taking advantage of the situation to increase rent values. Though the Lagos State government’s ban could give a bad name to the real estate market in Ebute Metta, however, on the bright side, this could positively affect the Yaba real estate market as more developers tilt towards upholding high development standards.