Nakuru City boundaries set to change as new development plan unveiled

Aerial view of Nakuru town. [File, Standard]

The county government of Nakuru has unveiled a plan for the fourth city.

Nakuru Governor Susan Kihika outlined her administration's priorities, some of which will require support from the national government and international development partners.

The governor has cited urban planning, housing, infrastructure, water, environment, socio-cultural and economic development among areas that need improvement.

"Delineation of urban boundaries will guide service delivery while implementing integrated strategic urban development plan and preparation of sector-specific plans," said Ms Kihika.

The county government is set to review the city boundaries, which are currently set at those used by the defunct Nakuru municipality, which included Nakuru Town East and Nakuru Town West constituencies.

Parts of Rongai and Bahati sub-counties, which have developed from agricultural to commercial and residential areas, are set to be within the new city boundaries.

"We need to clearly categorise areas under agro-processing zones, techno industry, mixed-use self-reliant urban districts and other secondary urban nodes with sustainable infrastructure," she said.

Former President Uhuru Kenyatta granted Nakuru City a charter in December, last year.

The journey for the status was long, as some stakeholders pushed for a delay in the elevation to allow for the establishment and provision of key services.

The city's amenities, most of them established in the early post-colonial period, are under pressure due to the growing population.

Affordable housing

The 2022-2050 plan includes a greening programme in the midst of the mushrooming concrete structures. The previous administration had begun rehabilitation of public parks.

Nakuru is among areas earmarked for affordable housing programmes under which the county government will provide land and houses developed by private partners.

Most parts of the country's newest city are under-served with supply of clean water and connection to the sewerage system.

Governor Kihika is already engaging international development partners to end the water shortage.

Last month, the Governor sought the support of Dutch water utilities.

"Even as we work on getting the construction of Itare Dam back on track, it is important to plan ahead and mobilise resources for the last mile to pipe the water to the households," she said.

The administration will also expand the city's drainage system.

"We shall promote creative arts and culture, diversify tourism and formulate trade-friendly policies and strategies to enhance economic prosperity and improve livelihoods," added Kihika.

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