Concerns mounting over developers’ alleged defiance of parking regulations
There are shocking revelations of continuous contravention of planning rules and regulations by property owners in major cities in the country. In cities like Lagos, citizens have failed to adhere to the urban and regional planning laws and regulations thereby contravening the provisions in the law.
This is coming where Nigerian Urban and Regional Planning Decree No 88 of 1992 and respective States urban and regional planning and development laws as domesticated are quite explicit on space standards, parking spaces, greenery and setbacks for different land uses and heights of building.
But the contravention of some standards like the parking spaces has pose serious traffic management issues that lead to time delays and traffic congestion. Furthermore, security of the residents can be in jeopardy in event of emergencies and fire outbreaks.
Added to this was the perennial source of frustration in many neigbhourhoods of getting parking spaces, which has resulted to tough competition for the limited number of parking spaces. For instance, it compels drivers to arrive well in advance of their preferred time making “Survival of the earliest” the rule. This has also resulted to societal disharmony and cohesion.
A director in Lagos State’s Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development recently told The Guardian that government is poised to ensure that defaulters comply with the relevant provisions of the law.
The official stressed that no new structures will be allowed without complying with the regulations. According to him, in the past, the ministry has not been monitoring compliance because of the rate of development in the state, assuring that the ministry has developed a new strategy to ensure compliance of its laws.
However The Guardian’s investigation revealed that despite assurances by the State Government to ensure compliance, the situation is assuming notoriety, with new developments being carried out in violation of the stipulated regulations.
For instance, the regulation in Lagos stipulates a car park per 60 square metres in a commercial building, while a residential building requires a minimum of two car parks for a unit or flat. Developers of place of worship are required under the law to provide a car park per 10 square metres or one car park for every 10 worshippers. Eateries and such outlets are also required to provide a car park for 35 square metres.
But emerging trends in Lagos metropolis show the opposite. Some of the new developments in Surulere, Ebute Metta, and environs, did not only violate the regulation, cars are being parked on the road thereby constituting security risks.
In Ibadan Street, Ebute Metta, where some new developments are going on , it appears that developers are finding it difficult to meet this requirement because of the need to maximise the use of their lands.
There are also pockets of developments around the area, where parking spaces are non-existence forcing residents to pack on the streets without considering its security implications and impact on other road users.
Recently, residents at Tafawa Balewa and Adjacent Streets, in Surulere have raised issues with Ashglow Properties and Investments Limited a developer of a residential building at N0 50 Tafawa Balewa Cresent Surulere for alleged contravention of Lagos building regulations.
The construction of the two buildings of two floors and two flats each on the property, they said was not in compliamnce with regulatory set back of six metres for residential buislings and air space requirement of three metres on both sides of the buildings and six metres between buildings of two floors as well as threemetres of rear airspace.
The residents association in a letter signed by their chairman, Kola Ademola- Osinuga and Secretary- General Akin Bajomo to the governor and copied to the General Manager, Lagos State Building Control Agency, LABSCA complained that non compliance with car parking space requirement of 2 car parking spaces for each family unit will create a nuisance and distress to the resdients an other road users.
The residents also complained that the developer had blocked the adjoin drains with rubbles and debris which has resulted to flooding of some houses on the opposite side of the building whenever it rains .
They also alleged that two cordial meeting have been held with the owner, Mr Segun Ashogbon but still he has not fulfilled his promises. But Mr Ashogbon, who confirmed meeting the residents association on the issue said, he had complied with their demands but said the residents are being unnecessarily difficult without minding that he was one of them.
According to him, the development is aimed at transforming the street and giving it a facelift. Alleging malice from resdients, he claimed that he had the necessary approvals and set backs and has even gone further to change some specifications from 4 floor units to 2 units to ensure harmonious relationship with the residents.
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