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The modern office space nobody wants to rent

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Kings Prism Tower: In August 2018, the iconic Kings Prism Tower in the Upper Hill area of Nairobi was opened for tenants. The 34-storey building’s opening was witnessed by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

The building that is located along Ngong Avenue in the most well-connected Upper Hill business district of Nairobi became the latest eye-catching architectural marvel in the area.

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Two years down the line, though, the 133-metre high building has remained an empty shell that no tenant wants to occupy. The building is yet to find a single tenant willing to take space.

One of the ‘To Let’ adverts that was put up by real estate firm, Ken Real indicated the Kings Prism Tower as having the following attributes:

BUILDING DETAILS:

Building Name : Prism Tower

Building Grade : A

Building Area (Ft2) : 280,000 Approx.

Floors : 28 Levels of Office Space— 114 Offices.

Parking Bays : 6 Parking Levels – 510

LEASE TERMS :

Rent (Per Ft2) : Office Ksh 120/-

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Service Charges (Per Ft2) : Ksh 25/-

Parking Ratio : 2.5 Per 1000 Ft2

The failure by the elegant building to attact tenants points to the troubled waters that the real estate sector in Kenya is currently sailing through. According to property manager Knight Frank, The decline in office uptake and stagnation of rental prices is mainly attributed to the continued oversupply of commercial space in some locations and the current economic slowdown.

The Prism is a Grade A building. This means that it has the highest quality and the top choice for most multinationals. “The buildings might have been constructed during the last five years and feature modernist architecture and the latest services,” says a report.

Upper Hill boasts of hosting some Kenya’s most modern and tallest buildings. It is in the area that Africa’s tallest building, The Pinnacle, is being constructed. When complete, the now stalled building will stand at 1,000 feet, have 70-storey, 11 floors offering Grade “A” commercial offices covering 75,000 square feet and also luxury apartments on over 40 floors.



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