The new tower that will house Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) headquarters in Nakawa will be commissioned in January 2019, the Authority has revealed.
URA will move most of its services into the 22-floor tower, on January 19 next year. The building which will upon completion will be the tallest in Kampala was built at an estimated cost of Shs 139 billion, which was entirely funded by the government of Uganda.
URA says the facility is intended to provide infrastructure for better service delivery by bringing together all URA back office operations in one building. At the moment, the tax body incurs significant costs on renting in different premises across the city, where different branches offer services.
An estimated Shs 3 billion is spent on rent by URA on an annual basis.
“URA also expects to reduce on the cost of doing business for taxpayers through provision of One-stop service center and savings on rent that’s to say over shs3Bn will be saved annually on rent,” read a notice on the tax body officials Facebook page.
The structure whose usable space amounts to 26,021 square metres (280,088 sq ft) has a maximum occupancy of 1,700 people. It was constructed by the MS Seyani Brothers & Co. (U) Ltd and the process has taken five years.
It is designed to be green with an Intelligent Building Management System (BMS) thus making it a high-performance building.
The total area of the parking structure is 12,923 square metres with five (5) levels for parking and the sixth level designed to house a crèche for breastfeeding staff. There will be facilities for gym and sauna as well.
A few months ago, during a media tour of the state-of-the-art structure, Anil Hirani, the site engineer told SoftPower News that the building will have nine elevators (running at 2 metres per second), one of them exclusively for service staff. He said the structure was designed to have natural airation given its height and environs.
A permanent open glass circulates the air upwards through the open central space which runs vertically through the entire structure, to the upper floors.
Each of the floors has two meetings rooms. Regarding security, the tower has been fitted with sensor detectors for fire related emergencies, as well as 88 CCTV cameras.
Hirani said that the project employed 300 workers initially and that majority of the materials used in the construction were sourced locally.
There is provision for underground parking for 360 cars, and surface parking for 710 vehicles.
The overall objective of the new facility is to converge its entire staff in Mukono, Kampala and Entebbe at the headquarter for efficient service delivery. Only the tax information centres in the Kamplaca Central business area will be maintained.