Kenya Railways has commenced the initial works of Phase 1 of The Sh27. 9 billion Nairobi Railway City.

This come one month after The United Kingdom committed £80 million (Sh11.9 billion) to build a green city of office blocks, malls and a light industrial hub on Kenya Railways land.

The project will relieve the Central Business District of part of the load in hosting enterprises through setting up economic zones that will comprise hi-tech industries and SMEs in a development set to create over 200,000 new jobs. This comes after president William Ruto officially presided over the groundbreaking of the project.

Kenya intends to redevelop the Nairobi Central Railway station and its surrounding areas into an iconic, Multi-Modal, Transit Oriented, Urban Development dubbed “The Nairobi Railway City”.

In a statement, Kenya Railways Managing Director Phillip Mainga said the overall scope of the Phase one early works cover the construction of a pedestrian footbridge across the Nairobi Railway Yard, construction of a new Nairobi Central Railway station and a public square.

“Owing to its strategic location, The Nairobi Central Station area will be developed into an iconic nerve centre for the Nairobi Multimodal Transport System,” said Mainga.

The works also includes hoarding and securing of the railway station and public park site, detailed drainage overhaul within the Nairobi Railway yard and construction of a new structural steel locomotive shed at the Makadara Yard.

It will also involve relocating the existing shed at Nairobi Yard, as well as the paving of Kenya Railways Headquarters driveway and car park. The construction is divided into phases and is scheduled for completion in 2030. The Kenyan Government and the UK Government are sponsoring the project.

The objectives include creating a transit hub with multi modal transport facilities, regenerate the area around the Nairobi Central Station and expand Nairobi to the South East.

It will also provide a liveable and sustainable urban space, as well as provide an iconic development to position Nairobi as a leading world City and commercial hub.

The project gathered momentum early last year after a UK consortium landed the deal to design the Rail Transit System (RTS) of the new modern station.