09 October 2019

US $230m has been approved by the African Development Bank Group for the expansion of Great North Road in
Kenya set to link major economic hubs in Kenya. The project is part of broader
government efforts to improve the country’s infrastructure, including the
construction of 1,304 km of new roads in recent years.

The road project involves converting the 84-km
Kenol–Sagana–Marua Road in central and eastern Kenya from a two-way single
carriageway into a dual bypass and is due for completion in 2025.

The new road will enhance traffic flow between the
port city of Mombasa and major centres like Nairobi. It will also ease
transport between Nairobi and the Mount Kenya region; and ultimately Ethiopia.

The overall cost of the project will be US $282m
out of which the 69% will be financed by the Bank Group, while 12% will come
from the Africa Growing Together Fund, set up by the Bank and the People’s Bank
of China in 2014 and the remaining 19% will be financed by the Kenyan

The current Kenol–Sagana–Marua Road is situated
along the Great North Road, which forms part of the 800-km stretch between
Nairobi and Moyale and runs across the five counties of Muranga, Kirinyaga,
Machakos, Embu and Nyeri.

Kenol–Sagana–Marua Road is also part of the
Trans-Africa Highway, commonly known as the Cape to Cairo route. Approximately,
1.15 million people will benefit from the upgraded highway.

“Building a 21st century road must also take into account climate change, which often leads to road runoff, flooding and erosion. In order to counter these phenomena, trees will be planted in the surrounding area,” said AfDB in a statement.

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