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Editorial
The Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) yesterday handed over a new Integrated Master Plan for Nairobi City, the first since 1973.The city has not had an urban development guiding framework since the expiry of the 1973 'Nairobi Metropolitan Growth Strategy in 2000'.

The Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) yesterday handed over a new Integrated Master Plan for Nairobi City, the first since 1973.The city has not had an urban development guiding framework since the expiry of the 1973 'Nairobi Metropolitan Growth Strategy in 2000'.

The new master plan has a robust agenda of making Nairobi a globally attractive city for regional integration and sustainability within 16 years. The plan aims at addressing challenges confronting the city, an example being the traffic jams around the Central Business District during the rush hours.

Thriving cities require a functional and efficient public transport system. The problem with previous plans is that none was implemented, hence the original plans for infrastructure and services have been abandoned and overstretched by demands.

The ball now lies in Governor Evans Kidero's court to ensure the plans are implemented and stakeholders' buy-in ensured. A number of flagship projects have been lined up to kick-start the revitalisation of Nairobi City; including Railway City Development, widening and construction of roads and the development of a new landfill project.

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Unlike before, we hope the master plan will not be politically manipulated or interfered with by those who have political connections when the rules are applied. Bureaucrats at Nairobi County must not ruin the chances of Nairobians and investors who are yearning for a chance to harness economic potential, reduce social inequity and create sustainable livelihoods.

The traffic menace that results in loss of valuable working hours and causes environmental pollution needs to be fixed soonest. The construction of circumferential road infrastructure and the re-planning of urban structures is welcome. Equally welcome are plans to expand Enterprise Road, Ngong Road and the development of a new bus terminus at Railway City.

On paper these plans look marvellous but without political goodwill, stakeholder participation and endorsement, they may well come to nothing. The brilliant plans need to be backed by policy guidelines and legislative frameworks. It is time to restore Nairobi's lost glory as the city in the sun. We must rally all efforts to address rising inequalities, unemployment among the youth, crime and abuse of drugs.


Nairobi City Development

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