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Guidelines for Residential and Commercial Buildings

Commercial and Residential Buildings

When engaging in constructing residential and commercial buildings in Kenya , the following guideline can come in handy;

  1. Feasibility Study-Carry out a simple feasibility study of the area you want to develop.Visit and meet with people leaving in the neighborhood. As questions about ownership of the land you want to develop, trends during wet seasons, proximity to wetland , roads, easements etc.Engage a land surveyor to confirm the demarcations of the land.Personally undertake a land search at the Lands Ministry and get original copies of the title deed.Search for the said land in the Ndungu report. Finalize the sale deal in presence of an advocate and register your agreement with the Ministry of Lands.DO NOT purchase land that has any anomaly no matter how small.Make your payments preferably by cheque.

  2. Architectural and Structural Plans-Engage a qualified Architect and Structural designer to draw development plans.Have a Qualified Quantity Surveyor prepare a detailed Bill of Quantities.Present the development plans to the Local Council and Physical Planning department for approval.If you plan to develop in phases , have the approval in phases too.

  3. Environmental Impact Assessment-Engage a National Environment Management Authority(NEMA )approved Lead Expert/Firm of Experts with a valid practising license, to prepare an Environmental Impact Assessment for your proposed project and present it to NEMA for review and approval.NEMA issues Environmental Impact Assessment Licenses for approved projects.Familiarize your self with the contents of the Environmental Impact Assessment report.It will act as a guide to monitor the project cycle.

  4. Once you have acquired a building permit from the local council, an Environmental Impact Assessment License from NEMA and a detailed Bill of Quantities, then you can engage a registered building contractor to start on the project.During the construction phase work hand in hand with all stakeholders i.e the local council engineer, the architecture , structural engineer, lead expert and contractor.The EIA report can act as a guide to all regulations relevant to your project and also comply with the Environmental Management Plan and EIA Licence conditions .

  5. Also note that according to Physical Planning Act CAP 286 the following shall be observed when constructing a permanent structure in plots abutting classified roads: Between 6m and 18m road width the building line shall be not less than 6m Any road greater than 18m in width, the building line shall be not less than 9m The set back distances are with respect to the road reserve boundary with the subject plot.