Murkomen, Sakaja agree to fast-track stalled BRT project

BRT station

One of the Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) stations under construction along the Thika Superhighway in this picture taken on August 17, 2021.

Photo credit: File Ngila | Nation Media Group

The stalled Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project to ease traffic congestion in Nairobi County will soon be revived following an agreement between Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen and Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja.

The two met on Wednesday and discussed ways to end traffic congestion in Nairobi, which remains a major challenge for the county and the country after previous regimes failed to successfully tackle it.

In their meeting, which was the first council meeting of the Nairobi Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (Namata), the CS assured the governor of the government's full support.

The CS said President William Ruto's government would pick up the project from where it was left by the last administration of Uhuru Kenyatta.

The CS for Transport noted that BRT will play a big role in improving Nairobi's transport system.

For his part, Governor Sakaja said that he and the national government were committed to making traffic congestion a thing of the past.

"Efficient, affordable and reliable mobility is key to unlocking the potential of our people," said Mr Sakaja.

Pick-up and drop-off points

The project, which started on a high note along the Thika Highway, has stalled, with sections built as pick-up and drop-off points left to rust, and no public communication as to why such an important project has been stopped.

According to the previous government's original plans, the project was due to start in July last year.

According to the Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, Charles Hinga, the project has been delayed because of building materials, which he says are being manufactured in a factory.

"Most of it is being done in a factory because it's steel fabrication, we don't do it on the road," PS Hinga said last year.

The fate of the project, which was supposed to be the pride of Nairobi alongside the busy Nairobi Expressway, now lies with the current government.

The meeting between Governor Sakaja and the CS for Transport also comes at a time when major roads are prone to flooding during heavy rains.