County to demolish old houses next week, build modern flats
Ambitious urban renewal plan calls for new multi-storey housing units and use of land on which old and dilapidated one-storey houses stand. Kidero calls it a new chapter
The county will begin demolishing some of Nairobi’s oldest estates this week to pave way for construction of 17,000 housing units. The new apartments will be one- to three-bedroom units.
Old and dilapidated houses in Bachelors (Jeevanjee), Ngong Road, Old Ngara, Uhuru, New Ngara and Suna road estates will be phased out as the county launches an ambitious urban renewal project. The estates stand on 3.5-7.6 acres.
Each acre will have eight blocks of apartments and support services, including playgrounds, schools and community halls.
A total of 2,520 housing units will be built on Ngong Road Estate. Old Ngara and Uhuru estates will each have 840 housing units, while New Ngara will have 1,050 units.
Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero has initiated the plan for decent and affordable houses to city residents.
The housing units will be developed through a joint venture with the private sector.
“My government is committed to ensuring that these houses will be affordable, especially to the social groups with the greatest need,” Kidero said.
The governor said he wants to ensure the best use of land.
Most of the estates are run-down and have been neglected for many years. The semi-derelict houses in most estates are surrounded by illegal structures and businesses.
“What we are doing from next week has not been done in a long time in this city. No new public housing projects have been done for decades, despite the swell of people seeking economic opportunities in the city,” Kidero said.
The demand for new housing in urban areas stands at 150,000 units annually, he said. Only 23 per cent of the demand is met, mainly through private sector initiatives, Kidero said.
The governor said an estimated 100,000 people move from their rural homes to Nairobi every year.
“We have a lot of catching up to do with the needs of our people. We cannot wait further than this. Through partnerships and the understanding of the people of Nairobi, we will move with this and open a new chapter for our city,” Kidero added.
People walk past the railway housings at Makongeni in Eastlands Nairobi