Britam Tower loses title as tallest building in East & Central Africa

Commercial Bank of Ethiopia is now the tallest at 209 metres

The new headquarters of the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia (CBE) in Addis Ababa.

Britam Tower's reign as the tallest building in East and Central Africa has come to an end, having lasted five years and still standing at 195 metres, above ground, with 32 usable floors.

The skyscraper in Nairobi's Upperhill business district has now been overshadowed by the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia (CBE) Headquarters located in Addis Ababa. CBE is the largest commercial bank in Ethiopia.

The CBE headquarters took five years and 11 months to complete and is now the third tallest building in Africa, and another project by the China State Construction Engineering Corporation.

The tower cost an estimated Sh34.5 billion (303.5 million USD), a mammoth 79 percent more compared tothe Sh7 billion used to construct the British-American Investments Company building in Nairobi.

The new CBE headquarters is 209 metres tall with 52 stories, two 5-storey podiums, and underground parking spanning 20 metres.

The building design includes 46 above-ground floors, a mezzanine level, a ground floor, and 4 basement levels. It also has eight conference halls, an emergency waiting room for disasters, two restaurants on the top two floors, and a sightseeing tower.

Britam Tower, on the other hand, comprises two separate buildings: a 31-storey office tower and a 15-storey parking silo with an interlinking bridge at the top floor which offers alternative means of evacuation during emergencies.

Ethiopia's Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, on February 13, inaugurated the new state-of-the-art skyscraper.

The inauguration event coincided with the CBE's 80th anniversary and was attended by senior Ethiopian government officials, Chinese diplomats in Ethiopia, and representatives of the CBE.

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