January 2014 given for ground breaking of new airport rail line


(Posted 14th December 2013)

In time for the celebrations of Kenya’s 50th anniversary of Independence has the Kenya Railways Corporation confirmed that work for the new commuter line from the city centre to the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport will commence in January next year. Groundbreaking is expected to be performed by President Uhuru Kenyatta, as one of the country’s main new infrastructure projects will go underway.

Transfer times to and from the airport have in recent years at times reached hours, compared to the less than 30 minute ride in the 1970’s when the new airport was commissioned, and tourists and business visitors alike have been complaining about wasting much time on the road, or living in fear to miss their flight, often just making it in the nick of time. The 10 billion Kenya Shillings project, which also includes several branch lines to connect the CBD with the more distant parts of the sprawling city, is aiming to significantly reduce the traffic jams now seen across much of the day in Nairobi, together of course with new ring roads and bypasses which are being constructed right now to in particular route transit traffic around the city.

The new commuter rail line will also be expanded from the present single track to dual tracks to allow for higher train frequencies and the airport expansion, known as Project Greenfield for which President Kenyatta performed the groundbreaking ceremony two weeks ago, will when ready also be connected to the rail grid for ease of access from the city.

The present main railway station of Nairobi will also be modernized and expanded to make access and use easier and comparable with similar stations in Europe, where in particular in London the rail links to Heathrow and Gatwick airports have established themselves as indispensable in order for passengers reach in time and at a reasonable cost. Watch this space for regular and breaking news about Kenya’s new wave of infrastructure projects, involving airports, highways and railways.