Sh4.5b road set to open up county to investment

Meru Deputy Governor Titus Ntuchiu, North Imenti MP Rahim Dawood and Kenya Urban Roads Authority board members inspect construction of Meru bypasses on Thursday. [Olivia Murithi, Standard]
The construction of Sh4.5 billion road expected to ease transport in Meru is near completion.

Kenya Urban Roads Authority (Kura) Director General Silas Kinoti said the project was 60 per cent complete and the President could open the road in October.

Eng Kinoti, who was speaking during the Kura board tour of the 36km road, said the project is expected to ease traffic congestion and transportation of goods and services.

The official added that residents occupying sections where the road is passing have already been compensated.

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“The two by-passes meant to ease traffic in Meru town are 60 per cent complete and we have put all mechanisms in place to ensure the roads will be ready and opened by the end of October. Most of the works now remain in the construction of the bridges,” said Kinoti.

Kura board chairman Henry Murwa said the road construction is in line with President Uhuru Kenyatta’s Big Four Agenda.

“We are inspecting the roads in the upper Eastern because as a board we want to confirm what we have in our records is what is actually on the ground,” Mr Murwa said.

“We hope the roads will bring most resources and add value to the products in the farm as residents will easily be moving their commodities for trade,” he added.

The project which was commissioned by the President at the height of election campaigns last year is fully funded by the World Bank.

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In Meru town, the Eastern bypass connects to Maua junction at Kaaga area while the Western bypass runs from the Meru National Polytechnic to Gikumene. The 21km bypasses are expected to ease traffic in the town.

Construction of the Sh1.5 billion, 15km Maua-Athiru Gaiti-Kilili- Meru national park road is also underway.

Kinoti said Kura is focused in doing management of roads in centres especially around the county headquarters.

“The urban roads will bring a solution to rural-urban immigration. Economic development of urban centres cannot be effective unless there is proper infrastructure and Kura has come to add in that,” he said.

Kinoti added that the Meru by passes are among well managed projects and the World Bank is using this to benchmark before initiating the same in other areas.

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“People are coming here to see how we have handled land compensation and the technology we are using. We have already compensated 99 per cent of the residents affected with the Sh1 billion which was donated by the World Bank,” Kinoti said.

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MeruKenya Urban Roads AuthorityKuraSilas Kinoti