Lekki, a sprawling community on the outskirts of Lagos, along the Epe Expressway, is now home to many Nigerians and a thriving real estate market. However, rising cost of rent and inadequate infrastructure, traffic congestion especially, have made life a nightmare for residents
It was not his first visit to the area, but Peter Marquis, a retired officer of the Nigeria Customs Service, was pleasantly surprised on March 1, on his way to the burial ceremony of his aunt at Lekki, on the outskirts of Lagos. He had visited the area last when it had a narrow single lane road and dreaded its notorious traffic congestion. Although there was still slight traffic congestion on that fateful day, the long snaky narrow road he was used to had given way to a new dual carriageway with three lanes on both sides, and state-of-the-art tollgates, which made vehicular movement a delight. To his surprise, Marquis saw well-structured estates and beautiful architectural landscapes dotting the road as he drove past. “Lekki is now a delight to behold,” he exclaimed.
Thanks to the new expressway, Lekki has been transformed from a near backwater settlement on the outskirts of Lagos into a sprawling, modern settlement, one of the fastest growing areas in Lagos. To many, the Lekki corridor is the ‘New Lagos’, judging by its booming real estate, massive construction projects, and huge government presence in the planned Lekki Free Trade Zone, LFTZ. To real estate professionals, Lekki is now a goldmine. The concentration of high net worth individuals and high-end businesses in Lekki has made it a good catchment area for investments. For example, both foreign and Nigerian professionals whose offices are in Ikoyi and Victoria Island, VI, are relocating to Lekki.