Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

ReliEnvironmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) is a process carried before any infrastructure development to ascertain the real impact and benefits of the project on the social, environment and what will be the mitigations to be undertaken to reduce negative biodiversity impacts. One of the key successes of any ESIA is by ensuring all stakeholders associated with the project are involved so that nobody is left out. These projects may be associated with housing, roads, dams, buildings and roads among others.

Kenya is increasingly experiencing implementation of major projects many being funded by big multilateral agencies such as European Union, AfDB and World Bank for electrification, geothermal and road constructions. One of the major requirements apart from project proposal is the institution of Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) for any project together with Social and Environmental Management Plan (SEMP). But how many people take intense look at both ESIA and especially SEMP report and monitor if the recommendations stated in these documents are being carried out?

The assumption is that the mitigation of negative impacts as stated in the recommendations will be adhered to by the engineers, government agencies, and community or project affecting persons who all have a major role in ensuring the project is implemented according to the original plans.

At what stage do we have ESIA National Environmental Management Authority making follow up after any projects ends and can the ESIA and SEMP reports still be used beyond the project timeline? Once the project starts, it is expected that the contractor will provide environmental management plan and possibly share it with the community and relevant authorities. Walking across major roads in Nairobi, it is common to notice open man holes and unfinished projects with no contractor on side which continuously poses a great danger to motorists and pedestrians. Look at Juja Road, Nairobi where a contractor left the site more than 10 years ago and unfinished open drainages, regular cabling projects and lack of pedestrians walking paths.

Lesson for Outering Road: On 31st May 2015, Citizen TV 9.00 pm news, aired item from of members of the public complaining about dangers posed by the open drainages and comments from victims along Thika Superhighway apart from regular road accidents. This clearly shows that once the project is finished then ESIA and SEMP becomes a forgotten document. Regular negative news from the much praised Thika Superhighway is not encouraging. The number of road accident especially by the pedestrian is quite high despite construction of footbridges together will less efforts to clear open air traders who have encroached on the pedestrian and bicycle paths is not encouraging.
The only visible ‘SEMP visible along Thika Superhighway is regular road maintenance most of it partly attributed by frequent road accidents. As the government and AfDB embarks on upgrading of Outering Road, it will be important for stakeholders to be informed and engaged in ensuring that Social and Environmental Management Plan is fully respected and monitored for a successfully projects.

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Outering 2When Outering Road is fully upgraded into a dual there will be need to improve road in estates such as Kariobangi South, Umoja Donholm and Buru Buru plus areas such Mathare North and Kariobanging Light Industries. These estates have very few road entering Outering Road which might lead to frequent traffic jams at the junctions into the estates. Here are some of the junctions into the estates:

Roads Outering Rd

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There has been so many ongoing projects along roadside like laying of cables along Juja Rd. This is a trend that is most likely to continue with advancement in technology.
Below is a check list from http://www.kenha.co.ke/index.php?option=com_jdownloads&Itemid=148&view=viewdownload&catid=15&cid=20

Checklist/Requirements for Roadside Developments
1. Application to construct or improve access roads to Class A, B, or C roads
• Application letter detailing the proposed developments and justification.
• A survey of the property from the Survey of Kenya
• Detailed Engineering Design Drawings with general layout, cross-sections and all other relevant details to scale (2 copies).
• A geo-referenced map (UTM map projection, Arc 1960 Datum) giving location and affected plot(s) in relation to the road (2 printouts and soft copy (CAD)).
• Complete application copied to Regional Manager of respective region for comments/consent following a site visit. Alternatively a site visit report from an officer from HQ.

2. Application to lay communication cables along and/or across class A, B or C roads
• Application letter detailing the proposed developments and justification.
• Detailed Engineering Design LayoutDrawings overlain on a properly geo-referenced map (UTM map projection, Arc 1960 Datum)showing cadastral data, longitudinal profile, cross-sections of typical trenches and road crossings (micro-tunneling), junctions and manholes/handholes with coordinates and all other relevant details to scale.Coordinates (X, Y) list for all the utility line bends and manholes/handholes should also be included in the map. Layout drawings should be provided for a scale of 1:2500 for the general layout and 1:500 for the details (crossings) and provided in 2 printed copies and in soft (CAD).
• Where service ducts are provided, the applicant shall not be allowed to lay the cable at any other point.
• Copied to Regional Manager of respective region for comments/consent following a site visit. Alternatively a site visit report from an officer from HQ.

3. Application to lay water pipelines along and/or across class A, B or C roads
• Application letter detailing the proposed developments and justification.
• Detailed Engineering Design Drawings overlain on properly geo-referenced maps (UTM map projection, Arc 1960 Datum)showing pipeline network and pipeline size(s), layout and profiles in relation to road, cross-sections of typical trenches and road crossings(reinstatement details where applicable), details of river crossings, road over rail/river bridge crossings & anchorages and all other relevant details to scale. Coordinates (X, Y) list for all the utility line bends and manholes should also be included in the map. Layout drawings should be provided for a scale of 1:2500 for the general layout and 1:500 for the details (2 printed copied & soft copy(CAD)).
• Where appropriate service ducts are provided, the applicant shall not be allowed to lay the pipe at any other point.
• Copied to Regional Manager of respective region for comments/consent following a site visit. Alternatively a site visit report from an officer from HQ.

4. Application to lay sewer lines along and/or across class A, B or C roads
• Application letter detailing the proposed developments and justification.
• Detailed Engineering Design Drawings overlain on properly geo-referenced maps (UTM map projection, Arc 1960 Datum) showing pipeline network and size(s), layout and profiles in relation to road, cross-sections of typical trenches and road crossings(reinstatement details where applicable) and all other relevant details to scale. Coordinates (X, Y) list for all the utility line bends and manholes should also be included in the map. Layout drawings should be provided for a scale of 1:2500 for the general layout and 1:500 for the details (2 printed copied & soft copy (CAD)).
• Copied to Regional Manager of respective region for comments/consent following a site visit. Alternatively a site visit report from an officer from HQ.

5. Application to erect power lines along and/or across class A, B or C roads and,
• Application letter detailing the proposed developments and justification.
• For underground cables, Detailed Engineering Design Drawings overlain on properly geo-referenced maps(UTM map projection, Arc 1960 Datum) detailing cable size(s), layout in relation to road, cross-sections of typical trenches and road crossings(micro-tunneling), road over rail/river bridge crossings & anchorages and all other relevant details to scale. Coordinates (X, Y) list for all the utility line bends and manholes should also be included in the map. Layout drawings should be provided for a scale of 1:2500 for the general layout and 1:500 for the details (2 printed copied & soft copy(CAD)).
• For overhead cables, detailed Engineering Design layout drawing showing the cable route and the position of all poles overlain on a properly geo-referenced map.
• Copied to Regional Manager of respective region for comments/consent following a site visit. Alternatively a site visit report from an officer from HQ.

6. Application to install any form of advertisement on road reserves along class A, B or C roads
• Application letter detailing the proposed developments and justification.
• A properly geo-referenced location map (UTM map projection, Arc 1960 Datum) showing all salient features and the location of the advertisement structure (with coordinates) in relation to the road and other existing utilities. Maps should be provided for a scale of 1:2500 for the general layout and 1:500 for the details (2 printed copied & soft copies(CAD)).
• For the support structure, detailed Engineering Design Drawing and supporting computations certified by a Registered Structural Engineer (2 copies).
• Copied to Regional Manager of respective region for comments/consent following a site visit. Alternatively a site visit report from an officer from HQ.

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road signsGood road should be there to enhance public safety for all road users such as motorists, pedestrians and animal crossing. Road signs play a great role in promoting safety and proving cautionary measures.
Thika Super Highway has seen new features such bridges, drainage reduction in hill elevation for some section. One common feature along Thika Super Highway is people crossing in none designated sections. Near Roysambu roundabout next power station people are seen attempting to cross and ignoring the bridge which is next to the bus stage. There are no road signs warning pedestrians not to cross the road.
Our government should promote education on road signs regularly for all road users. For example the bicycle tracks along Thika Super Highway have either been invaded by motorbikes or hawkers thus discouraging bicycle users especially section next to Alsops or opposite GSU. Hawkers operating near the highway should also be involved in road sign education programme since they are always interacting with many people each day.
Outering Road has an opportunity to integrate more use of road signs from the start instead introducing them after the road is finished. I came across this handbook from United Kingdom, is a handbook which indicates all road signs likely to be found while driving in UK. (www.direct.gov.uk/prod_consum_dg/groups/dg…/dg_191955.pdf‎)

Welcome to Nairobi County…city askaris are usually seen patrolling the streets, controlling traffic while some workers are in the slashing grass and trimming overgrown trees or shrubs. Parking attendants are seen patrolling the streets up and down collecting parking fees. At City Hall the receipts are manually processed. At some points police are seen patrolling the streets and others managing traffic flow which to some is a sense of security within the city.

In some parts of the city, estates are choking with uncollected garbage, lack of adequate and quality water, insecurity, ill equipped and underfunded social halls…but still the county government collects revenue from the people.

The residents and business are blamed for lack of paying land rates and other levies thus denying council revenue to run the city while government officials talk of modernizing and equip the police with latest technology to combat the rate of crime.

Cities that have integrated use of technology in their service provision are known to collect more revenue and being efficient. Equipping police with cars is not enough rather the eye and ear of police being allover is important. Cities like London have cameras almost everywhere enabling the police to respond to emergencies and be better in investigations of crime and drivers are careful since they know that somebody is watching.

When I visited New York and Washington DC in 1999 I was ‘shocked’ to see a truck fitted with huge round brush being driven to clean the street. The truck had only one person. I think Nairobi has only one if am not wrong.

Walking into City Hall very few offices are equipped with computers. There is a lot of paper moving around which tells you use of computers is minimal among the staff. In some of building, the receptionist record all entrants of the building into a register, but do they analyse these information for improve service?

Having use technology will help city collect revenue more efficient but this should go beyond by also improving service delivery in areas such managing waste, parking spaces and security.