Third Eye

How upgrade of Outering Road has transformed city

Wednesday, January 26th, 2022 09:10 | By
A section of the new-look Outering Road in Nairobi. Photo/PD/File

By Bwire Mugola

Offering solutions is the mark of success for any project. In recent years, Kenyans have witnessed the implementation of critical infrastructural projects that have not only opened up the country but have improved livelihoods when it comes to accessibility, ease of transport and even security.

Upgrading of Outering Road is one such project. It offers an in-depth look of how strategic solutions injected in the right place by President Uhuru Kenyatta’s administration have not only transformed Eastlands area but also proven to be among the major steps in improving the road transport in Nairobi.

Emerging from an era where Nairobi’s road network was erratic, potholed with traffic jams throughout the year, no one would have imagined the end of such a nightmare and transformative change the road would bring in the city.

Launched in 2015 and constructed at a cost of Sh8.5 billion, the Outering Road stretches 13km right from the junction of GSU on Thika Road and ends at the Eastern Bypass.

The road not only serves a large percentage of Nairobi residents in the densely populated areas of Eastlands particularly Huruma, Kariobangi, Dandora and Umoja but has also created improved traffic linkages with major highways and improved transport for the commercial and industrial activities in the area.

Before its upgrading, motorists endured serious traffic congestion and was also a major reason for flight cancellations for people heading to the airport.

The construction of the Outering Road is one major infrastructural development that has offered direct benefits to Nairobi residents both on a micro and macro-level.

For passengers using public transport to the Central Business District, the upgrading of the road has markedly reduced travel time.

Cutting across different zones of the city, it has opened up road intersections such as those at Juja Road, Manyanja Road, Industrial Area, Buruburu among other feeder roads.

Outering Road also serves as an alternate route from the busier section of Mombasa Road as it joins through the Eastern Bypass to Kenya’s gateway, the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.

Better transport has also meant improved businesses in the vicinity benefitting both small-scale road side sellers and medium to commercial industries stretching in the area of Baba Dogo, Kariobangi and the larger industrial area.

The practicability of infrastructural projects cannot be underrated as it is deemed to be a key solution to jumpstart a country’s economy with varying intensity.

For a fact, the upgrading of Outering Road has reduced travel time and cost, eased travel safety and comfort, improved access to social services, created employment and even increased population of the general area.

It is a channel for urbanisation and creation of opportunities for both large and small-scale businesses and movement of goods and services in a fast and efficient manner.

The transformative effect of the Outering Road offers tangible proof that infrastructural development is strategic in the growth and development of a people and its nation.

As the country transitions to new leadership, the next administration should commit to pick up infrastructural development as a key transformative tool that will ensure Kenya attains its goals as outlined in Vision 2030.

— The writer is a public policy analyst —[email protected]

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