Nairobi’s Western Bypass facing delays due to Covid

Written By: Benson Rioba

CRBC says the project will be completed by the of 2022. | KBC

The 17.3-kilometers Western Bypass Highway in Nairobi County which is currently 40 percent done is likely to miss the completion date due to COVID-19, the contractor has warned.

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According to China Road and Bridge Corporation, measures aimed at curbing the spread of the coronavirus pandemic has seen the company considerably reduce working hours.

Restrictions in movement and social distancing recommendations announced by the government to contain the spread of COVID-19 has led to a contraction in output setting back the Kshs 17 billion project.

CRBC is also attributing the expected delays to heavy rains experienced in November 2019 through to January 2020 and adverse weather conditions in February through May 2020 with the project completion date now being pushed to the end of 2022.

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The multi-billion shillings road which is one of the major links designed to decongest the capital city comprises a 15.3-kilometer dual carriageway, seven Grade Separated interchanges, ten overpasses, and five underpasses.

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CRBC further says additional time has been lost to land acquisition process for relocation of existing power lines.

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By the end of October 2020, Kenya Power had relocated 90 percent of the power lines in section I, 50 percent in section II, and 20 percent in section III.

The National Land Commission has gazetted additional parcels of land to be acquired to accommodate proposed interchanges in  Gitaru, Kabete, Wangige, Karura, and the section between Ndenderu and Ruaka.

The Western Bypass connects towns such as Gitaru, Wangige, Ndenderu, and Ruaka.  The Western Bypass road is set to complete the 4 Ring Roads in the Nairobi Road Network Master Plan.

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Construction of the project begun in March last year and was scheduled to take 39 months to complete.

Western Bypass is part of the roads designed to form a ring round Nairobi City ensuring smooth flow of traffic and easy access to key transport hubs such as Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Wilson Airport, and the SGR Nairobi Terminus.

Other roads include the Southern Bypass, Northern Bypass, and Eastern Bypass.


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