President Uhuru Kenyatta on Wednesday, December 1, presided over the conferment of city status to Nakuru, in an event full of pomp and colour at the newly opened Nyayo Gardens.
With the conferment, Nakuru is set to join the other cities of Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu to cement its status as one of Kenya's metropolises, which offers an array of merits, that will see the transformation of the once small town into an economic giant.
In that light here are the various benefits that Nakuru will enjoy after its elevation to city status:
The upgrading to the road networks
The new city's road network has led the city to be on a fast trajectory to be among the most developed urban regions with the restoration of the routes opening it up to the fast-moving economy.
The Kenya National Highways Authority(KeNHA) and the Kenya Urban Roads Authority(KURA) have given the roads leading in and out of the city a total facelift, linking residential and commercial zones with the city.
Two major interchanges have been constructed along the Nairobi-Nakuru-Eldoret highway. The interchanges were constructed at the Nyahururu and Njoro turnoffs and have completely changed the face of the entry and exit points of the town.
The roads are expected to ease congestion in the Central Business District and the Nakuru Eldoret highway, which has been a source of misery to those residing within the city.
Establishment of an Airport
The Kenya Airports Authority has been tasked with the construction of Nakuru city's Lanet Airport, which is scheduled to be completed in August 2022.
The Ksh3 billion project will open up the region to untapped opportunities as it has a high potential for taxpayers with the project set to boost the tourism and the horticultural sector.
Residents will also enjoy the benefits of the upgrading of roads leading to the airport.
Rehabilitation of Public Parks
Nakuru's city status with no doubt demands that the appearance of public parks and infrastructure be revamped, and hence, the county government has taken up the project to beautify the new city.
During the conferment ceremony, President Uhuru Kenyatta unveiled the Nyayo Gardens, which was under rehabilitation since 2019, which will offer residents and visitors a serene environment to relax in the busy city.
The infrastructure around the park has been beautified as well, to match the aesthetic of the newly renovated gardens.
Hub for investors
Nakuru county prides itself in its prominence in the industrial sector, and the conferment of the city status will open up the centralised region to prospective business as industries are set to benefit from investor funding to grow the region's economy.
The move will see the city benefit from government funding that will nurture the manufacturing industry, hence contributing to the country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
The city's centralized location puts it at advantage over the other cities, exerting its dominance in the agricultural sector as its climate and volcanic soils are suitable for farming and livestock keeping.
During the conferment ceremony, President Uhuru opened the Kisulisuli market that will boost agriculture and trade within the city, to facilitate the growth of economy of the new city.
Nakuru's elevation to city status will help avert the looming mushrooming of slums as it has been on the spot over the crisis , due to the ballooning population of the city.
President Uhuru commissioned a 605-affordable housing unit project in Bondeni settlements. This will cater to the residents of the city, in a bid to alleviate their poor living conditions and increase security in the slums.
This will hence expand the municipality's boundaries, as more people will be willing to settle into the city.
Nakuru might be the youngest of the cities but is projected to make a splash in the economic sector, prospectively looking at cementing its place in the fastest growing economic hubs in East Africa.