Posted in Challenges, Need Intervention

Upperhill Roads – huge sacrifice or misfiring plans?

I like plans especially architectural plans with 2D models (pictorial impressions) and more so the 3D models(makes everything look so beautiful and believable). When I first saw the impression above of the Langata Road Upgrade Plan. I was smitten like an adolescents with his first crush. I was so overjoyed that no amount of dust, mud and snull-up to Karen or galleria mattered while the contractor was at work. For I believed all that was the sacrifice we had to pay for the promising future. I also believed that finally Rongai will be part of Nairobi.  Every comedian made fun of the long hours trips Rongai residents and those of its environs made each morning coming into town.

So far so good, we can see progress and the pain of the last seven months is slowing being replaced by sighs of relief. For we are now seeing the road take shape. It is not exactly as the impression but it will be soon.

Upperhill’s road network was also ear marked for upgrading. Given that KENHA among other government agencies in the Road Ministry are housed here I thought the works would be quickened. We all know the traffic Upperhill commands since many blue ship firms, embassies, Kenyatta Hospital and SMEs dot the whole place. I know there is a plan and models but the sight of Ragati road which was redone a few months back is appalling. A new road not two years old and already they are patching it up? Remember they had not even fully finished it for it floods after every downpour. Kenya Road outside TSC is shaping up but their pace is worrying. The other roads undergoing upgrades are all dug up!!

Could the contractors and the agency involved consider finishing at least two roads first? Instead of digging up all and leaving only two for the huge traffic that Upperhill commands? It could be a misfiring plan that adds salt to the injury that is our huge sacrifice. Something has to be done and contractors must be briefed.

This brings the other question that I will address tomorrow of the fiber cables dug up.

Posted in Challenges, Need Intervention

UpperHill Tree Cover

We all agree there is a lot of work going on in Upperhill, Nairobi. With many blue chip companies having bought land; they are now building with quite a pace never seen before. Once one plot has been cleared of the glorious trees and natural vegetation, the development then takes off and seems to go on night and day.

It is interesting that this area houses  most of the major banks new buildings, embassies and insurance firms as well. There seems to be an un-named  vybe that attracts multinationals and investors to this area. As Kenyan contractors and the many youth who work in these development spaces we welcome this. And silently pray that after completion we will see the multitude akin to the Teachers Service Commission building along Kenya Road visitors (that are known to fill the building overflowing to the street) be employed.

My plea to the developers and investors is to try and preserve the glorious tree cover and natural vegetation. That planting of trees and vegetation after completion of projects be taken as a rule. The Late Nobel Laureate Wangari Mathaai’s rule “plant two trees for each cut down” should be employed.

It is true the glorious tree cover in Nairobi not only gives the city a cooler atmosphere but also has very strong implication to our oxygen, water catchment among many other environmental benefits. I beseech the government, Contractors Associations, Architects Association of Kenya, Nairobi Business Association, civil society and the entire private sector to sensitize the developers in this great cause. We do not want to have a Mau Scenario replayed here.

And could the Urban Roads Authority and Ministry of Roads encourage the contractor that has been doing Ragati Road for the last two-going three years to please complete it?