The construction of a Sh.5 billion bypass in Eldoret funded by the national government in collaboration with African Development Bank (ADB) is on course.
The bypass which stretches 32.9 km, starts from Cheplaskei Centre on the highway between Ngeria and Cheptiret through Kapseret on Eldoret–Kisumu road and terminates at Maili Tisa (Leseru).
The project launched in August 2017, by President Uhuru Kenyatta is under the supervision of Kenya National Highways Authority (KENHA), with the roadworks done by China Wu Yi Contractors.
According to KENHA Engineer, Jeckoniah Opudo, the single carriage bypass shall have three separated interchanges and a roundabout to enhance capacity and ensure smooth flow of traffic.
He said once complete, the bypass will help decongest Eldoret town by reducing traffic congestion to about 60 per cent.
“We are majorly targeting to divert the heavy commercial vehicles, before they get into town, since they have no business in town, being the major contributors of traffic snarl ups,” he explained.
Eng. Opudo highlighted some of the benefits accrued to include ease of transport, especially farm inputs and agricultural produce, since the road is traversing an agricultural zone.
It shall also facilitate the ease of movement by people and create employment to the locals.
“The bypass shall also spur development along the 80 metres, corridor through growth of semi-urban centers boosted by three stations which will be set as truck parking areas”, he added.
He however, pointed that there’s need to acquire more land to set up the corridor to 80 metres down from the existing 10 metres.
“Our major challenge is the encroachment on the road reserves, but the Authority will put a barrier by planting trees at the extreme edges of the reserves to cushion against encroachment”, stated the engineer.
Other projects being undertaken by KENHA in the County, include, widening the Eldoret- Kapsabet and Eldoret-Iten roads, improving their drainage system, strengthening pavements and setting up standard road bumps.
By Bethsheba Abuya/ Isaac Cheruiyot