The Kenya National Highways Authority (KeNHA) has reopened the Airport South Road that has been closed from the public for six years.
In a notice on December 15, the agency’s Director-General Eng. Peter Mundinia disclosed that the road which had been closed since February 2014, would be accessed by Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) Buses only.
“The Kenya National Highways Authority (KeNHA) wishes to notify the general public that further to the closure of the section of the Airport South Road between Outering Road/ Airport North Road Overpass and Freight Terminal Road Roundabout on February 20, 2014, pursuant to Cap 403 71 (1) of the Traffic Act.
“The road section is now open to only Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) buses with effect from December 7, 2020,” Mundinia stated.
The reopening is meant to facilitate the Nairobi Commuter Rail – JKIA Express Service which is expected to ease the commute between the airport and the Nairobi CBD.
With the route, commuters can use the train service from the Central Station (popularly known as Railways Stage) to Embakasi Railway Station from where they will board a bus to take them to the airport.
“They will then be ferried through the Airport South Road which will be dedicated to the Nairobi Commuter Rail Bus also referred to as the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) vehicles,” a statement by KRC disclosed.
The connecting plans are to allow air travelers an alternative mode of transport to and from the airport, with a trip from the CBD to JKIA setting back a commuter Ksh500.
It is expected to save commuters the inconvenience of being caught up in the Mombasa Road traffic jam which has been aggravated by the ongoing construction of the Westlands-JKIA expressway.
Kenya Railways Managing Director Philip Mainga stated that buses had a capacity of 52 to 80 passengers noting that the express option would have three trains in the morning and another three in the evening while the route through Embakasi would have an hourly train.
“The regular train and bus service will ensure a safe and cost-effective means of transport that saves time by avoiding traffic jams usually experienced on the roads leading to JKIA,” he explained.
When fully implemented, the commuter rail and the BRT project will be connected to improve efficiency and reduce congestion on the roads.
The buses which already have a dedicated lane on the Thika Superhighway are expected to carry up to 100 passengers.