Many years ago, Rem Koolhaas, a luminary figure in global urban architectural design, and the winner of the 2000 Pritzker Architecture Prize (basically the Nobel Prize for architecture), gave an interview with the Guardian UK, where he spoke about the work he and Kunlé Adeyemi did in Lagos in the late 90s.
Koolhaas mused on working in a region considered at the time to be virgin territory, remembering a place equally full of intrigue and danger. "Nigeria was blank on the map—there weren't even any maps. But Lagos at that point was not very inviting even to Lagosians. It was considered a no-go zone, almost in its entirety."
25 years later, Lagos, a self-proclaimed megacity, with an economy that would make it Africa's fifth largest, and home to anywhere between 15 and 25 million people, remains unforgivingly hostile. As the author Uzodinnma Iweala evocatively put it, the state's motto, "Centre of Excellence," is tinged with sarcasm.
Nigerians have a love-hate relationship with Lagos.
On the one hand, most Nigerians are understandably appalled by