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14.03.2017 Futuristic vision for US$ 2 Billion 'New Dakar' unveiled at MIPIM

Answering a real market demand for projects with the power to attract both domestic and international investors, while reflecting the President Macky Sall’s Senegal 2035 Vision, SEMER Investment Group LLC, an Emirates-Senegal based company with offices in Dubai and Dakar, has launched a new vision for West Africa’s economic powerhouse of Dakar visualising a US$ 2 Billion ‘New Dakar’ city extension project titled, ‘Diamniadio Lake City’.

A first for Senegal and Francophone Africa, the project is crucial for sustaining West Africa’s prosperity. ‘Diamniadio Lake City’ is the largest urban masterplanned growth project of its kind in Sub-Saharan Africa and will include a new Central Business District (CBD) for Dakar.

The project supports the President’s 2035 vision outlined in the “Plan for an Emerging Senegal” (PSE) and the country’s solution to a number of challenging factors including sustainable economic development, inward investment, capitalisation on its rich resource industries, population growth, increasing employment - the construction phase alone immediately creating 45,000 jobs, and improving education, as well as assisting Dakar’s ongoing efforts to deliver better transportation and connectivity whilst relieving congestion.

Presented as a utopian city concept, ‘Diamniadio Lake City’* will be split into three zones including Dakar’s new business zone with LEED certified buildings, a high-end residential district, and a luxury quarter for retail, entertainment and leisure, all incorporating the latest renewable energy technologies and eco-friendly construction materials.

Taking influence from the beautiful natural formations found in Senegal, the striking flow of architecture has sustainability at its core and portrays some of the most impressively designed buildings yet in Africa. The new city within the existing city of Diamniadio will also focus on lifestyle and recreation with particular use of landscaped outdoor space naturally rendered masterplan centered by a beautiful idyllic lake.

SEMER Vice-Chairman and CEO Mr Dične Marcel Diagne comments on the driving principles behind Dakar’s ‘Diamniadio Lake City’ project, “Since independence from France in 1960, Senegal has strived to compete on an international scale but many socio-economic challenges faced the country. Through continual improvements over the last five decades in areas of democracy, political change, humanitarian efforts in welfare and economic growth, the country has been successful on many levels, but relentlessly both government and private businesses continue to strive for better.”

“Today, Senegal faces unrivalled prosperity in West Africa and ‘Diamniadio Lake City’ will act as a platform for not just Dakar to flourish, but Senegal and neighbouring Sub-Saharan countries. Recent discovery of oil and gas off the west coast and avoidance of global commodity price decline in recent years due to lack of export trade, means Senegal’s economic outlook is extremely positive.”

“SEMER is developing ‘Diamniadio Lake City’ to reflect these strong economic fundamentals whilst capitalising on the influx of international inward investment. Many countries including USA, China, France and UK are investing into infrastructure, resources, housing, logistics and manufacturing. This demonstrates that Senegal has long-term economic appeal and in turn will create job opportunities, new accommodation and increase investment into educating a skilled and semi-skilled population. ‘Diamniadio Lake City’ will be a new world-class financial district supported with international retail, entertainment and leisure never before seen in West Africa”, concludes Mr. Diagne.

Centrally-located to take full advantage of all current and future infrastructure, ‘Diamniadio Lake City’ is located 30km east of Dakar on the National Route 1 (N1) motorway and 2km north of the expanding seaport of Bargny, which is currently constructing one of the largest multicommodity mineral ports in West Africa. The site also benefits from close proximity to Dakar’s new second international airport ‘Biaise Diagne de Diass’ due for completion in 2017, and will be serviced by it’s own train station, providing fast links to Dakar’s current business district, suburbs, airport and surrounding cities.

The masterplan project is a 57 hectare site that makes up part of a wider ‘Diamniadio Pole’, a 1,644 hectare development zone supported by the African Development Bank that includes the new United Nations African Headquarters due for completion in 2019 and Senegal’s largest events venue the Abdou Diouf International Conference Centre, which opened in 2015 and now the fifth most popular conference destination in Africa. It will also host a second University of Dakar, government institutions and new emergency hospital.

The wider development zone will also include accommodation for 350,000 inhabitants and facilities for technical, research and innovation in the sectors of agriculture, logistics, industrial and healthcare.

Highlighting Senegal’s growing reputation and economic prosperity, the country is now ranked No.81 in Forbes 2016, ‘Best Countries For Business’ ahead of BRIC members India No.85, Brazil No.91 and China No.102. Senegal is very much open for business and the landmark ‘Diamniadio Lake City’ offers many great opportunities for investors, occupiers, operators and brands from all over the world.

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