Hope for Stalled Nairobi BRT as Parliament Allocates Sh3 Billion

June 13, 2024

Kenya’s lawmakers have earmarked Sh3 billion to settle outstanding debts owed to the contractor responsible for the initial phase of the Nairobi Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system. This decision by the National Assembly’s Budget and Appropriations Committee also ensures the completion of the remaining work on the stalled project in the 2024/25 fiscal year.

The committee, led by Kiharu MP Ndindi Nyoro, noted that an additional Sh3 billion would be allocated for development, specifically to clear pending bills and finalize the remaining tasks on BRT Line 2.

Moreover, Kenya is set to receive Sh1 billion in external funding for the project in the upcoming financial year.

The Nairobi Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (Namata) launched the BRT system in August 2020, with initial designs for depots and stations anticipated to be completed by June 2022. However, the project has stalled as the contractor withdrew due to budget cuts, leaving bills amounting to billions of shillings unpaid.

The 27-kilometre BRT Line 2, named Simba, is one of five planned routes under the BRT initiative. This line is designed to connect Ruiru with the Kenyatta National Hospital, traversing the Nairobi Central Business District.

As part of the modifications, the contractor reconfigured Thika Road to support a dedicated BRT lane. This involved converting the two innermost lanes of the road and constructing ten middle island stations accessible via existing median strips and footbridges.

Despite these challenges, Namata emphasizes that the BRT lanes are projected to operate at an average speed of 30 km/h, one of the highest globally, promising significantly reduced travel times on the BRT corridor.

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