Nairobi – 27 October 2018: EU in Kenya in partnership with Kenya Urban Roads Authority today launched a non-motorised lane along Raabai Road in Nairobi’s Buruburu Estate. The launch is part of a public awareness campaign on the importance of improving access to non-motorised transport facilities and promotion of urban sustainable accessibility, especially among persons with disabilities.
Speaking during a cycling event dubbed Nairobility, Mr.Walter TRETON, Head of Infrastructure Development at the EU in Kenya said, “For a long time, the pedestrian has not been considered in the design and planning of transport infrastructure. This affects many Kenyans who walk long distances to get to their places of work and business, constantly fighting their way through.”
Several surveys have shown that many vehicles on the roads of Nairobi are personal private vehicles with over 70% carrying only one passenger, resulting in strain and congestion in the urban road networks. On the other hand, the use of non-motor means of transport like bicycles is very minimal. But it has been demonstrated in studies that non-motorised transport generates little to no air pollution, no greenhouse gas emissions and minimal to no noise. They are therefore environmentally friendly as opposed to motorised transport.
Mr TRETON called on everyone involved to ensure that they develop efficient and environmentally sustainable ways that improve the mobility of city residents when they need to walk or ride their bicycles. He said that this would also improve the safety of school children when they must walk the distances from their homes to school.
Officiating the event Esther Passaris urged Nairobi residents to adopt the culture of cycling as this would encourage those responsible for designing and building roads to consider having bicycle and passenger lanes along all roads in the city. She added that cycling and walking were also part of exercising that would help many people improve on their health.
“We know we face a number of challenges with Sustainable Urban Mobility in Nairobi because most roads in the city were designed and built for motorised transport, but we also know there is potential for many opportunities if we can review this. Today’s activity is among the first steps to putting things in order,” she said.
Also speaking at the function, KURA Director General, Eng. Silas Kinoti reiterated KURA’s commitment in managing, developing, rehabilitate and maintaining what we call National Urban Trunk Roads.
“We recognize our role in maintaining quality, safe and adequate road networks in urban areas for both motorised and non-motorised transport. To this end, measures are in place to ensure that all future road construction works put into account non-motorised lanes,” said Eng. Kinoti
Urban dwellers face daily challenges with movement due to the lack of Non-motorised facilities. Studies show that 40% of commuters in Nairobi use Non-Motorised transport, 60% of them from East of Nairobi, through the Jogoo Rd corridor.