The execution of the Lanet/Nakuru International Airport project has begun following a groundbreaking ceremony held at the 81 Tank Battalion Barracks in Lanet. Speaking during the ceremony, Deputy Kenya Air Force Commander Brigadier John Omenda said that the military will provide necessary support towards the implementation of the project which will serve Nakuru County and the entire country at large.
Also present at the ceremony, Transport Principal Secretary (PS) Solomon Kitungu described the project as “an early Christmas gift for the county and a major milestone.”
Implementation of the project
Funded by the national government of the Republic of Kenya to a tune of over US$ 27M, the Nakuru Airport project will be implemented in two phases.
The first phase will entail the construction of a 1.7Km runway, the rehabilitation of the current runway to bitumen standards, the erection of a fence, and the construction of taxiways. It will also involve the construction of a terminal building and a military lounge, the construction of air rescue and firefighting building as well as the construction of military and civilian gates.
A power substation and a patrol road will also be constructed in the first phase which according to PS Kitungu will be undertaken within the next 18 months.
The second phase will mainly involve the extension of the runway from 1.7km to 3.1km, and widening it to 30 meters so as to allow the airport to accommodate much larger aircraft.
Boost to the horticultural and tourism sectors
The Nakuru county boss, Governor Lee Kinyanjui during the groundbreaking ceremony said that the project will boost the horticultural and tourism sectors that play a pivotal role in the country’s economy.
“Even as the national government expands the Nairobi to Mau Summit Highway into a dual carriageway, this airport will be critical infrastructure. It will better position the county as a tourist destination and help in getting perishable goods to the capital city, Nairobi,” said Mr. Kinyanjui.