Road projects around Nairobi near completion

BUSINESS |

A section of Waiyaki way around Museum hill and Waiyaki way. [Courtesy]

It will take a traveller in Ruaka about 30 minutes to get to the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) once the Nairobi Expressway is completed. 

The road is also expected to cut travel time from Rironi on the Nairobi-Nakuru highway to JKIA from three hours to just 20 minutes.

More importantly, agricultural produce from Kiambu will take less than an hour to get to JKIA for export and to markets in the city centre.

Head of the President’s Delivery Unit and State House Chief of Staff Nzioka Waita said the country loses about Sh11 million in economic value every hour in traffic and the goal is to reduce this loss.

“It is important to note that the expressway is just one piece of a bigger project. The president is determined to address the economic impact of traffic jams,” he said during a tour of the expressway and other road projects around Nairobi last week.

“As it stands, every hour we lose about Sh11 million in economic value to traffic jams.”

The road projects undertaken include expansion of the Eastern Bypass from City Cabanas to Ruiru, connection to the Nairobi Inland Container Depot (ICD) and North Airport road to Outer Ring through Umoja to Dandora and ending at Baba Dogo, opening up that entire section, Mr Waita added. 

Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia said the 27km expressway will be completed in February 2022, tested in March and commissioned by President Uhuru Kenyatta in April 2022.

“The Athi River-Machakos turnoff is just one segment of the entire corridor which we have from Mombasa all the way to Malaba. We have six key segments of this particular trunk,” he said. 

The Nairobi expressway is one of the segments from Athi River turn-off to James Gichuru Road, which is now about 64 per cent complete.

From there, the section to Rironi is now 93 per cent complete and will run from there to Mau Summit, a distance of 175km with a loop round Naivasha.

This segment has already been awarded to French contractor Vinci under public-private partnership.

“The last segment is from Mau Summit to Malaba, which is a project we are negotiating with partners on how it can be done,” explained Mr Macharia.

The CS explained that their focus is to make sure no segment is left behind.

“The Athi River turn-off joins two critical TransAfrican highways - the one from Mombasa to Malaba and the intersection with the Great North Road that starts from Cairo to Egypt and coming from Namanga in Tanzania then it joins the Northern corridor in city of Nairobi to the Museum turn-off where it goes towards the North all the way to Moyale

“On this, we have integrated not only the inter-county infrastructure but also the Intra-Africa infrastructure,” said the CS.

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