Most old buildings especially in the administrative quarter, Bonanjo are casting off their old shell to adopt a new face lift.
Douala is made up of many old buildings which though used to be the pride of the city in the past, now look obsolete in comparison to newly constructed ones due to evolutions in construction technology.
As such, in order to keep abreast with times and adopt a modern look, most old buildings are being renovated within the metropolis enabling the construction companies to do brisk business.
With Cameroon to host the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, all hotels in Douala are under renovation especially those retained to host official delegations to Africa’s greatest football jamboree.
The renovations for the AFCON hotels have to do with changing rooms to double bed rooms, improving internet services, restaurant, gymnasium as well as the general outlook of the hotel. The others, targeting tourist for the tournament are merely putting a fresh coat of paint to give the edifice a face lift.
Just around the administrative quarter of Bonanjo, there are over a dozen buildings under renovation. These include, the city council building, part of which was ravaged by fire, which is being reconstructed to give a futuristic look to the city council office.
When completed, one part of the building will be oval shaped with five storeys while the entire frontage will be reshaped as well as a car park created; another case in point is the only CNPS building just opposite the immigration police station in Douala, which had been programmed for demolition but which after a second thought is being reinforced and renovated.
Even the building hosting the SOPECAM office in Douala is under renovation. The Telecommunications Regulatory Board office in Douala which was in an advanced state of dilapidation, has also been entirely renovated, making it look like an ultra-modern building with aluminium sheets replacing the tiles on the external walls.
Renovation work entails mending the fissures or cracks on the walls, providing a fresh coat of paint or redesigning the internal structure of the building with make shift partitioning according to the use of the building whether for housing or as offices. It is no longer fashionable to find houses with louvres or wall tiles. The tendency now is to have glass windows and the outer walls covered with aluminium sheets instead of tiles as in the past.