Makoko; a Floating city in Nigeria | Via
The shanty town of Makoko is located on a lagoon on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean, a stone’s throw from the modern buildings that make up Lagos, the biggest town in Nigeria and the main commercial and industrial center. In this sprawling slum on the waterfront, adjacent to the 10 km long Third Mainland Bridge, tens of thousands of people live in rickety wood houses raised on slits. There are no official census records, but estimates suggest some 150,000 to 250,000 people live here.
For decades, residents in Makoko have had no access to basic infrastructure, including clean drinking water, electricity and waste disposal, and prone to severe environmental and health hazards. Communal latrines are shared by about 15 households and wastewater, excreta, kitchen waste and polythene bags go straight into the water they’ve lived on top of. The only way to get potable water is to buy them from vendors who get it from boreholes. The government provides no free water to Makoko residents. Indeed, the government doesn’t want Makoko residents living there at all. On July, 2012, the government swooped into the low-lying coastal community and demolished many of the floating houses and other illegal structures. The officials cited health and sanitation concerns, but some locals suspect that the underlying motivation is a desire to sell off the area lucratively to property developers.
The media outcry following the demolition and the community’s protest led the state government to announce a regeneration plan to provide accommodation for 250,000 people and employment opportunities for a further 150,000. Recently, a team of architects (NLE Architects) devised a floating school built from plastic barrels that has space for classrooms as well as play area.