Multi-Billion Shillings City Retail Markets Nearing Completion 

An artist impression of Githurai market

The impeachment of former governor Mike Mbuvi and the outbreak of the deadly coronavirus which forced the government to immediately enforce lock down control measures in March 2020 led to the construction of the markets stalling

By The Weekly Vision

At the beginning of this year, small-scale traders in various parts of Nairobi were supposed to have moved into multi-billion shillings ultra-modern markets courtesy of the Nairobi City County Government with substantial financial support from the World Bank and other development partners.

However today that dream hangs in limbo as City Hall continues to battle its internal political ghosts at the expense of the traders. The impeachment of former governor Mike Mbuvi and the outbreak of the deadly coronavirus which forced the government to immediately enforce lock down control measures in March 2020 led to the construction of the markets stalling.

However when the government eased some of the restrictions last year, construction works resumed and according to City Hall officials, the markets are complete and have already been handed over to the traders.

“These are major development projects that we had been working on around the clock that is until when this deadly coronavirus pandemic hit us, at the time we were about to complete the projects and traders should by now have occupied the markets to do business.” Mr Njunguna said

The County Lands, Urban Renewal and Housing, boss Peter Njuguna was quoted saying “These are major development projects that we had been working on around the clock that is until when this deadly coronavirus pandemic hit us, at the time we were about to complete the projects and traders should by now have occupied the markets to do business.” Mr Njunguna said that despite these setbacks and the departure of governor Sonko among others, the county government and the Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) are committed; the projects are expected to be officially opened by President Uhuru Kenyatta and representatives from the World Bank before Kenyatta leaves office.

Githurai Market

He said the county government was looking at commissioning the markets by end of July this year, the markets will be a major source of revenue for the county apart from employing thousands of people “The Nairobi City County government with support from the World Bank committed more than Kshs. 80 billion for the construction of new modern retail markets at strategic locations across the city to boost trade as well as increase revenue collection,” said Mr Njuguna.

The projects targeted strategic locations in the city’s Central Business District (CBD) and closer to residential estates to provide faster services. He said: “Some of these projects are ready while others are still in progress and nearing completion.

The work on the fire stations is 90 per done, and one of Waithaka is 70 per cent done as well as the Mwaliro market. They will also include roads Most of the retail markets in the city were built in the 1960s or before independence, therefore, they are old, and worse still their stalls and design do not meet the demands of today’s Nairobian. “We want to change that,” Mr Njuguna said.

Some of the oldest retail markets owned by the county government across the city include City Market Kahawa West Market, Umoja Market, Jogoo Road Market, Burma Market, Wakulima market, Gikomba market, Marikiti Market, Jericho Market, Jerusalem Market, Kariakor Market and many others in residential estates.

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