Fola Osibo and by extension Emma Abimbola cole has gradually become the most sort after business location in Lekki phase one. Just a little over two years ago, the street was mostly residential with very few business locations situated on it. Save for the few restaurants and patisseries, the street like any other residential area within lekki phase 1 was usually a quiet place after 8pm on weekdays and weekends.
So why the sudden change from a quiet residential area to a bustling commercial hub and when did this change begin? It is difficult to pin point the specific period when the street assumed the strategic business label it has garnered for itself now. Although one can trace this beginning to the redevelopment of a prized corner piece property on Babatope Bejide Crescent that now houses one of the most sought after Serviced Office providers. This development gave life to the hitherto dull ambience that initially characterized the streets and its extension Emma Abimbola Cole. Existing businesses like Seven Six and Ten interiors, Health Plus and Ideal Furniture were the only prominent nonresidential buildings that were on the street before the Springville Flexsuites development. Three years since Springville Flexsuites opened its Serviced Office business several abandoned properties have been completed and a growing percentage of residential buildings have been quickly redeveloped and converted to business premises, making the street the alternative business hub in Lekki Phase one after Admiralty Way.
Fola Osibo is easily accessible through the major routes in to and out of Lekki phase one, it connects to the Freedom way through Abimbola Cole and can be directly connected to, from Admiralty way through Grace Anjous, Adebayo Doherty, Victoria Arobieke and Ayinde Akinmade from Emma Abimbola Cole. Aside the corporate and retail businesses currently occupying the street, there is a growing number of entertainment and leisure spots springing up on Fola Osibo, this makes the work and social life balance easy as the transition from strategizing for a business deal can lead to conclusion of that deal in a less formal environment.
As expected though, this change has led to increased property valuation and also in rent, which makes it more difficult for small business owners who desire to situate their business on Fola Osibo but are challenged by finances to do so. But there is opportunity for these people and that is what we will be dealing with in our subsequent post.