Condemned city building now given clean bill of health
The National Construction Authority (NCA) has given a go ahead for the completion of construction of a commercial building at the junction of Kimathi Street and Kenyatta Avenue which it had condemned last November.
The building is set on the site of former Nakumatt Downtown where 29 lives were lost in an inferno on January 28, 2009.
National Buildings Inspectorate secretary Moses Nyakiongora told journalists at the site that construction work was stopped due to non-compliance but would continue conditionally, under the supervision of a contractor and other relevant authorities.
Mr Nyakiongora said that the developer has now engaged a consultant after it emerged that before, work was carried out without one.
During the audit, a number of anomalies and defects were noted in the preliminary report such as the site did not show existence of quality control set up to ensure that the development was being implemented in accordance with the design standards.
The building also did not have a fire exit, absence of staircase to access the basement, poor quality concrete works, poor quality workmanship.
Mr Nyakiongoria said that had construction work not been stopped, it would have collapsed on reaching tenth floor due to the deflecting beams and poor quality of construction materials. The building will have 17 storeys.
The new consultant, Dr Moses Kiliswa, said that there will be some partial demolition and strengthening of the building.
Dr Kiliswa said the ramp to the basement will be demolished and reconstructed afresh for accessibility of the basement floors.
He added that they will upgrade the concrete elements and have additional slabs for the floors which will be redesigned so as to reduce the entire weight of the structure for safety enhancement.
Deputy Director and Communication Officer National Disaster Management Unit (NDMU ) Pius Masai urged developers to follow the laid-down guidelines and laws in ensuring that only standardized buildings are constructed.