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UK, Kenya sign design contract for the new central railway

UK and Kenyan governments unveil the final design for the new central railway that will revolutionize transport in the city.

The Nairobi Railway City Project is now underway thanks to an agreement between Kenya and the United Kingdom for the development of the Nairobi Railway City and Central Station.

Tuesday saw the signing of the design agreement between WS Atkins International Limited in the UK and Roads and Transport CS Kipchumba Murkomen.

The development of urban mobility in the Nairobi Metropolitan region will be significantly aided by the Central Station.

The Nairobi Commuter Rail network will carry a capacity of 30,000 passengers per peak hour.

According to Murkomen, the Nairobi Railway City is in line with the government’s development strategy for promoting economic growth through the inclusion of MSME, commerce, and the creation of a sustainable housing project.

“The Central Station and Public Realm will form part of the first phase of the project that will see the delivery of 5,000 jobs during construction with a further 5,000 jobs when completed,” he said.

He added that the Central Station will be a truly green development that incorporates climate resilience and ESG principles throughout its development and operation.

The project will be designed to minimise carbon emissions and optimise energy efficiency.

“The station will also be designed to be resilient to the impacts of climate change with features such as flood protection and drought-resistant landscaping. It will adhere to high ESG standards with a focus on social equity and environmental protection,” Murkomen revealed.

The project will be achieved in collaboration with the UK government through the provision of technical assistance and financing via UK Export Finance.

“The UK-Kenya collaboration pays homage to the seed through which our capital was founded 130 years ago and ushers a new dawn where our two governments collaborate on sustainable developments that are climate resilient and focused on stirring economic growth for the benefit of future generations,” the CS said.

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With the signing of the contract opens the way for accelerated development of additional projects within Nairobi Railway City.

The move will see opportunities for private sector investment around sustainable housing, retail, commercial office, MICE and light industry among others.

According to Murkomen, the intricate designs are set to be completed by the end of 2023.

It is estimated that major works at the Central Station will kick off in January 2024.

“I witnessed transformational urban regeneration projects in the UK such as Kings Cross and London Bridge that we can borrow a leaf from, particularly the role that coordinated planning and development plays in delivering on projects of similar magnitude to Nairobi Railway City,” the CS added.

Leaders present during the signing of the contract included PS for State Department for Transport Mohamed Daghar, Kenya Railways Managing Director Philip Maing, British High Commission representative Mark Povey and WS Atkins International Limited Client Director Philip Dowrick among others.

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