At a time when some states in Nigeria like Lagos and Ogun have set the ambitious goal to achieve a mega city status, one wonders if a silicon city is in their master plans.
By Silicon City, I mean a place for growing and nuturing start-ups. Simply put, a start-up hub. While I’ve suggested quite a few places in Nigeria that can be developed to encourage start-ups, entrepreneurs and investors to move to, I didn’t consider Ilorin, Kwara State until now.
In a video posted on YouTube, a new proposed commercial project called Asa Dam Muliti-purpose Center is being embarked upon by the Kwara State Government, which if managed well, could make Ilorin a potential start-up hub to watch.
Vop Osili, an Architect and Founding Partner and Principal, A2SO4, who visited the site in 2007, described it thus:
The Asa Dam project is a massive undertaking that will result in a tourist center unlike anything that has ever existed in that part of the world. It includes a large amusement park, three hotels, a conference center, a mall, gardens, and a sprawling golf course.
Also included in the plans is an international school, which will give Nigerian children the chance to experience high-quality education for the first time. The project will cover almost 1,000 acres and seeks to elevate the Asa Dam area’s prominence, both nationally and internationally.
It is also an environmentally-conscious project that will preserve the ecosystem and biodiversity of the area. The goal is to bring new investment to Nigeria and new pride to a nation of people.
What about Electricity?
According to an article in Trade Invest Nigeria,
Due to the recent completion of the Ganmo sub-station, Ilorin currently enjoys very close to 24 hours a day of uninterrupted power supply. In fact, many business owners are delighted by the fact that they have to make very little use of generators.
If this is true, I guess we can start picturing a city such as Ilorin becoming a great start-up hub. Whether this would become a reality or not, I don’t know. But I think it could very well compete with Silicon Cape which is gradually bringing people together to create Africa’s largest start-up hub in Capetown, South Africa.
Perhaps, the Silicon City Nigeria social network created by Kayode Adebayo via the Ning platform could spark up discussions on creating an ideal start-up hub in Nigeria.
Until then, a silicon city in Nigeria might just be a dream.
Photo via: Tourism ROI
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