Law on cities and towns plan­ning to be amended, says CS Kaimenyi

The Star (Kenya) - - Politics -

Laws guid­ing the es­tab­lish­ment of towns and cities will be amended to re­flect the cur­rent re­al­i­ties, Lands CS Ja­cob Kaimenyi (pic­tured) said yes­ter­day.

He said the Ur­ban Ar­eas and Cities Act 2011 will be amended to re­flect the re­cent de­vel­op­ment. “Mar­kets, towns and cities will be recog­nised and have a plan­ning sys­tem to ensure they are well planned,” Kaimenyi said. He said 50 per cent of Kenyans are set to move to ur­ban cen­tres.

The Act says a pop­u­la­tion of 10,000 res­i­dents forms a town, while a city has 500,000 res­i­dents. “The last two decades have seen Kenyans move to­wards own­ing homes in city. Pre­vi­ously, the city was just a house, the real home was in the coun­try­side,” Kaimenyi said. He spoke at Crown Plaza dur­ing cel­e­bra­tions to mark World Town Plan­ning Day. The day recog­nises ac­com­plish­ments of plan­ners and their con­tri­bu­tions to com­mu­ni­ties. Kaimenyi said he will not rest un­til all grabbed pub­lic land is re­pos­sessed.

He urged phys­i­cal plan­ners to ad­here to ethics in the pro­fes­sion. Kaimenyi said plan­ners have been ac­cused of con­tribut­ing to the mess in the coun­try, in­clud­ing land grab­bing. He said a lot needs to be done to im­prove the coun­try’s ur­ban mo­bil­ity sys­tems.

“Our matatu oper­a­tors should re­spect the High­way Code. Bet­ter still, our towns needs to move to­wards high ca­pac­ity mass and tran­sit sys­tem,” Kaimenyi said. He said cities and towns must in­vest in in­fra­struc­ture that en­ables Kenyans to use non-mo­torised means, such as walk­ing, jog­ging, bik­ing and skating.

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