Abandoned Nigeria National Theatre eyed in renewal

Updated at: 04/04/2013 11:06 AM
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(AP) LAGOS, Nigeria - Nigeria’s iconic National Theatre, long in disrepair, is now at the center of a massive redevelopment plan that could be worth millions of dollars.

Nigeria’s federal government has plans to use money leasing the swampy land in Lagos around the theater to private investors so they can build a mall, a five-star hotel and other amenities. The deal involves untouched land in a city where land is scarce, making it incredibly valuable.

However, some have doubts that the project will actually raise money for the theater. Meanwhile, the plans have already likely encouraged local officials to demolish the homes of slum dwellers living around the theater.

Nigeria built the theater, which resembles a military officer’s cap, ahead of a 1977 arts conference and it is a landmark in the city.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)