Phase One of the Konza Technopolis vertical infrastructure is 80 per cent complete, providing the requisite amenities necessary for investors who have already started construction works for their investments.
Konza Technopolis Development Authority (KoTDA) Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Eng. John Tanui, said that the vertical infrastructure incorporates the roads, water, electricity, solid waste system, and all the other amenities for a city and they have constructed them in world class standards to ensure that the infrastructure is futuristic, resilient, sustainable and able to be a model for other developments in the country and regionally.
“We have some of the latest world class infrastructure at Konza, when we talk about roads, we are talking about streetscapes where we have additional facilities including cycling lanes, green spaces, allocation for things such as internet cables, water pipes, waste water among others,” said Tanui.
Speaking Monday during the SemaNaSpox zoom discussion, Tanui said that in the sewerage management, they have the latest technology which is called waste water reclamation facility, which collects all the waste, treats it and reclaims over 95 per cent of the water for re-use because Konza is a water scarce location.
“We have one of the first solid waste management system in the region, where waste is separated at source and using an automated vacuum system you collect the solids to one location, you separate it and you can take it to the next process of recycling,” said Tanui.
“We have a research institute currently under construction in partnership with the Ministry of Education. The institute will have students at masters and PHD levels and this will position Kenya as a regional hub for research and innovation,” said Tanui.
He highlighted that the Authority is working with the Ministry of Energy to put-up the 700 Mega Volt Ampere (MVA) power substation, which is meant to supply enough power to support manufacturing at Konza.
“The Technopolis is expected to contribute at least 2 per cent of our GDP, currently our GDP is estimated to be 100 billion dollars and we are looking at Konza to contribute at least two billion dollars to the economy yearly,” he said.
He explained that Konza is geared towards creating job opportunities dubbed (knowledge workers) and in Phase One they are looking at creating 17,000 jobs in high skilled labour and technology with other indirect job opportunities.
Tanui explained that in Phase One, the uptake by investors is 75 per cent and the spaces include areas to build residential houses, offices, manufacturing zones and all other things that are required in a city and a special economic zone.
He highlighted that the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) are consulting for the establishment of the Kenya Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, which is under construction and is expected to have the first student’s intake in the next one year.
“We are already hosting the national data centre at Konza and it is already operational, making it very easy for public and private sector to run their e-platforms, websites and any other IT related software’s easily without investing a lot hence reducing the total cost of ownership,” said Tanui.
Government Spokesperson, Col. (Rtd) Cyrus Oguna, called on schools and educational institutions to visit the Konza Technopolis and see the progress for learning purposes and for motivating the students, to take up courses in the technology space.
“The government has the Digital Literacy Programme (DLP) and visiting Konza should be one of the practical sessions so that the students can see where their skills are required and therefore put in more efforts in their studies,” said Oguna.
By Joseph Ng’ang’a