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How far is Musanze vacating dilapidated commercial buildings?

A cross section of some of the new buildings built in Musanze City Centre following the directive of closing down dilapidated commercial buildings

It is now 10 months on after a directive by Musanze District officials asking building owners from Musanze City to vacate dilapidated commercial buildings.

The directive called on the old-building owners to either refurbish or rebuild their structures in accordance with the city construction master plan.

The development was received with mixed reactions by some of the traders and owners of the buildings in question who at the time expressed that however the concept is good, its implementation would affect their business.

Effectively from September 30 last year, 37 buildings in question situating along Musanze-Rubavu highway were closed down as the deadline given was over.

Since then, 3 modern buildings have been successfully constructed, 15 are under construction while the owner of the other 6 building are still acquiring construction permits according to Augustin Ndabereye, the district vice mayor in charge of economic development.

“Musanze City construction master plan states that building next to Musanze-Rubavu highway must have at least three levels. A lot has done to ensure the master plan is endorsed and within a year we are now at 50 per cent toward having such kind of buildings.”

“We are very confident that we will hit our target within a year ahead as whoever involved in the process is really committed to deliver on the promise.” He said in an interview.

Ndabereye said Musanze District encourages owners of the ramshackle buildings to form cooperatives and work together to ensure they come up with the required modern buildings.

He however, explained that the decision of vacating dilapidated buildings aims at ensuring that Musanze District consolidates its position as one of the secondary cities in the country.

He also expressed that the move will significantly contribute to the tourism sector as Musanze is the country’s main tourist town, owing to the thousands of visitors who annually throng the Virunga National Park to track mountain gorillas.

“As it is well known Musanze is the country’s tourism hub thanks to its uniqueness of having gorillas in the park so having renovating the building in the town is another added value toward straightening tourism sector,” Ndabereye said.

Straton Turatsinze, the chairman of Private Sector Federation (PSF) in Musanze Districts echoed Ndabereye’s similar sentiments stressing that the progress attained toward the implementation of Musanze City construction master plan is “so far commendable”.

“For us to contribute to the implementation of Musanze City master plan we conducted study tours to Kigali to learn from the former property owners who came together and formed joint ventures and are now owners of some of the ultra-modern housing complexes in the city, we therefore concluded that we should do the same.”He said

Turatsinze assured that PSF Musanze PSF members committed themselves to fully implement the master plan along Musanze-Rubavu high way within the next two years and then they will move to the other parts of the district availing whatever stated by the master plan.

In Musanze town, there are over 2000 members of Private Sector Federation.

The Express News

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