KE International, a US based Consulting and Engineering firm, has been awarded a US $6 Billion construction contract to build the futuristic-cryptocurrency themed City in Senegal promoted and founded by Senegalese-American superstar and philanthropist Akon.
With the awarding of the contract, KE International has secured US $4 Billion from investors for the first and second Phases of execution of Akon City, and will have Dubai based Bakri & Associates Development Consultants lead the architectural designs under KE International guidance.
Akon City's Phase 1 is expected to complete by end of 2023, and will see the construction of roads, a Hamptons Hospital campus, a Hamptons Mall, residences, hotels, a police station, a school, a waste facility and a solar power plant.
Akon City Phase 2 will run from 2024 to 2029 and will end with a complete cryptocurrency City running exclusively on AKOIN cryptocurrency.
The initial US $4 billion investment secured by KE International for building the smart city Akon City, is led by leaders in healthcare and technology infrastructure and include MMTC's Julius Mwale. Mr. Mwale's Hamptons Hospital, Mall, supermarket, solar power group, and data centers will be part of phase 1 of Akon City.
Another Co-development partner is Senegal's state tourism agency SAPCO, which will fit the City into the country's tourism vision. The government of President Macky Sall of Senegal has earmarked Akon City as a special tax zone with tax breaks to be given to the City to encourage investment.
Akon City is located on 2000 acres on the ocean, less than an hour drive South of the new International airport in Dakar. Among all the new infrastructure and projects, KE International will build Akon City to be ‘Leader in Energy and Environmental Design’ (LEED)-certified, the second such City in Africa with this certification after MMTC in Kenya.
Akon City will also have parks, universities, schools, a stadium, hotels, and an industrial complex and will be fully completed by 2030.
The singer initially announced plans to create a city in the west African country at the Cannes Lions advertising festival in 2018. As reported by Cointelegraph, the project portends a “100% crypto-based city with Akoin at the center of transactional life.” The metropolis would become Senegal’s first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)-certified city. It is set on a 2,000-acre parcel gifted by the Senegalese president some 120 kilometres south of the capital Dakar. According to an interview from November on radio station Power 106, Akon City is a long-term undertaking. “It’s a 10-year building block so we’re doing it in stages. We started construction in March  and stage two is going to be 2025,” Akon said.
KE International is known for the design and execution of the US $2 billion Mwale Medical and Technology City (MMTC), a green City based in Western Kenya, which began in 2014 and is expecting completion in December 2020.
MMTC, which is 85% complete, was founded by a US based Kenyan entrepreneur and Investor, Julius Mwale. MMTC is anchored by Hamptons Hospital, a large 5000 bed referral hospital which opened to the public in 2019, and recently partnered with the AKOIN platform for its blockchain based digital transactions.
The entire Hamptons Hospital will be completed by end of 2020 and is currently a reference center for COVID-19 prevention and treatment in the 14 County Lake Region Economic Bloc (LREB) of Kenya, a region with a population of 16 million.
MMTC has 35,000 community residents served with a new supermarket, new and upgraded residences, Mall, Golf, thousands of solar streetlights, and is powered by 100% renewable off-grid energy. A large Artificial Intelligence Cluster to run the hospital is currently under development.
A futuristic city based on blockchain and cryptocurrency
The project is led by the artist’s organisation Akoin (Aliaune Damala Badara Akon Thiam), which is an emerging cryptocurrency and DApp ecosystem. They defined themselves as “a cryptocurrency powered by a marketplace of tools and services fueling the dreams of entrepreneurs, business owners, and social activists as they connect and engage across the rising economies of Africa and beyond; created by visionary global artist, change-maker, innovator and humanitarian, Akon.”
But Akoin, according to its website, will soon launch its beta platform. It’s the foundation of the Akoin team’s three-part vision to empower “rising entrepreneurs with digital and real life tools and services; and enabling brands to unlock the power of Africa’s rising economy.”
Speaking to Newsweek in 2018, and collected by dezeen media, Akon said that he hoped that the city would be the first of many that uses cryptocurrency – a digital currency based on blockchain, which is a set of digital records that track transactions chronologically and publicly.
"With the Akoin we are building cities, the first one being in Senegal. We're securing the land and closing out all the legislation papers for the city. We want to make it a free zone, and cryptocurrency-driven as a test market," he said.
"If it works, we will scale it out to all the other countries in Africa so all the cities are connected. It's going to be a 50- to 100-year project, most likely. I probably won't even live to see it finished. But for the project in Senegal, we have a 10-year deadline for that city to be built out."
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