car free
A picture of Nairobi Central Business District (CBD)

Wednesdays and Saturdays will be car free days in Nairobi, Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia has announced.

The government is preparing itself to roll out the much anticipated Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system and now Macharia says that the Nairobi Central District (CBD) will be a no go zone for vehicles ahead of the arrival of the BRT buses which are being imported from South Africa.

Speaking during a status update press conference, the CS said that the buses will arrive soon adding that the government will display one of the buses at Uhuru Park, Nairobi County to allow residents to familiarise themselves with what the government wants to achieve.

“Sixty four buses from South Africa will be used in the pilot programme. We are also in negotiations to import 11 others from Spain,” said CS Macharia.

According to the former banker, projections by his Ministry indicate that for Nairobi to be fully decongested 900 BRT will be required in order to ease traffic in the city.

Further, CS Macharia added that the government has provided local manufacturers with templates to allow them have a feel of what is required before they manufacture the remaining buses.

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Local manufacturers had in January protested the move by the government to import the buses from South Africa saying that the move defeats the purpose of the Big Four Agenda.

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In a statement to newsrooms, the Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) said, “In our endeavour to grow the sector at 35% per year to achieve the desired 15% GDP contribution by 2022, the Buy Kenya Build Kenya Strategy should be rigorous and should prevail for both the short and medium term. This is especially so for products that can easily be manufactured within the country,” the statement read.

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