Sakaja to decide on access to city parks’
Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja will decide whether members of the public will access Uhuru and Central parks for free or charge a fee.
That is according to Nairobi Metropolitan Service (NMS) Director General Mohammed Badi. “On payment issues it will depend on the new governor and his vision of raising revenue,” he said.
Both parks are more than 85 per cent complete.
They have been closed for the past 11 months for renovations by NMS. MPs allocated Sh1 billion for the renovations of both parks. Using its own contractors, NMS is renovating Uhuru and Central parks into a world-class modern look for recreational purposes.
Uhuru Park will have manicured lawns, maintained trees, enhanced walkways and green spaces. The lilies pond at the park will be turned into an aquarium named Uhuru Aquascape. A larger artificial lake will be transformed into a major waterfront with a Swahili restaurant.
There will be an outdoor amphitheatre fitted with an audiovisual screen, a Nyatiti-shaped events garden, and a children’s play area complete with bouncing castles and merry-go-rounds.
The iconic Nyayo statue and Mau Mau freedom fighters monuments will be maintained. There will be a botanical space with all species of flowers and plants to capture Kenya’s floral biodiversity.
Flowers and plants labelled to enhance learning.
Management offices, event spaces, ablution facilities, physical exercise spaces and touristic features and attractions will be available.
Central Park will have an outdoor library for use by children to read and it will also be used for book launches.
The two parks were closed for renovations in October after Nairobi MCAs approved a motion to rehabilitate them.
A motion by former Nairobi Majority leader Abdi Ibrahim Guyo sought to have the parks urgently closed and restored to their former glory.
Guyo said the iconic parks have suffered years of neglect and are in a state of disrepair.
He said they risk losing their appeal, historical significance and recognition should they not be rehabilitated quickly.