BY ONOME AMUGE
The United States has commenced the construction of a $537 million new consulate in Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial capital city.
The move, according to the U.S consulate statement made available to Business A.M, is aimed at fostering the bilateral friendship and investment partnership between the U.S and Nigeria.
Located on a 12.2- acre site in the rapidly developing Eko Atlantic City, the new U.S consulate, expected to take approximately five years, with completion scheduled for 2027, will support diplomatic and commercial relations between the U.S and Nigeria, and also provide American and Nigerian Consulate employees with a safe, secure, sustainable, and modern workplace.
The new Consulate, designed to be the largest U.S. consulate in the world, demonstrating the importance of the relationship between the United States and Nigeria, is also expected to provide a modern space for the largest consular operation in Africa, including improved public-facing interview and waiting areas.
In addition, the construction project targets Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), Silver Certification ––a globally recognised designation for achievement in high performance, best-in-class, green buildings, and incorporates many features designed to make the building more sustainable.
Ennead Architects LLP of New York serves as the design architect, Pernix Federal, LLC of Lombard, Illinois, stands as the design/build contractor, while EYP, Inc. of Albany, New York, is the architect of record.
“Throughout the project, an estimated $95 million will be invested in the local economy, and the project will employ approximately 2,500 Nigerian citizens, including engineers, architects, artisans, construction workers, and administrative staff,” the US Consulate statement said.
“These workers will have the opportunity to learn new technical skills and safety awareness that will help distinguish them in the local market,” the statement read.
The official ceremony marking the beginning of the construction was attended by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, as well as Mary Beth Leonard,the U.S ambassador to Nigeria,and Claire Pierangelo, the U.S. consulate general.
In her remarks, Leonard said the vision for the remarkable Consulate campus is to create a facility that both honours the vibrant relationship between the United States and Nigeria, and communicates the spirit of American democracy, transparency and openness.
Pierangelo remarked that Nigeria and the United States have a long-standing history of people-to-people engagement fostering bridges between the two nations.
“We look forward to the many accomplishments we will continue to achieve together in the future,” the consul general added.