Residents of Karen and Lang’ata estates in Nairobi have opposed the construction of buildings that ruin the serenity of their neighborhood.

Through the Karen and Langata District Association (KLDA), the residents insist that property development in the area is controlled by restricting building height and sub-division of land to specified minimums.

“This sees to it that the Karen area has a low-density residential character,” said KLDA Chairman Sikalieh Samora.

KLDA however claims the area set aside for residential use covers an expansive 14,000 acres, equivalent to approximately 56 km2.

“In the recent past, there have been developments in Karen that have been objected to by Karen residents, primarily because that the proposed buildings do not conform to the Local Physical Development Plan.

“Commercial buildings in residential zones, bars in residential areas causing pollution, buildings exceeding the permissible heights, an influx of petrol stations/strip malls, amongst others,” Samora lamented.

Karen residents have also decried the sorry state of infrastructure at the Karen Shopping Centre.

“The state of the Karen Roundabout (shopping centre) is in dire need of rehabilitation and collaboration between KLDA and local authorities will see to it that sustainable solutions are derived,” said Samora.

The Association put developers on notice saying there are existing judgements in favour of Karen residents.

“In October 2021, a judgement was passed by the Honourable Justice Loice Komingoi that stated all developments in the Karen area ought to seek approval from the KLDA office.

“On August 2, 2022, another judgement was passed in KLDA and its members’ favour by Hon Justice Lucy Mbugua that stated that an injunction be granted to stop the construction of a proposed 8-floor building that has been proposed as the Centre for Parliamentary Studies Training Centre,” added Samora.

The association has also asked newly elected leaders to ensure that laws and regulations governing development within Karen are adhered to.

“The Association of Architects of Kenya (AAK) is also directed to advise its members that there is an LPDP in place when planning or designing projects in the Karen area, they should ensure that the project proposals conform to the LPDP.

“KLDA and its members are committed to ensuring that Karen remains as an exclusive, low density, clean, safe residential suburb in the capital city of Nairobi,” said Samora.