The County Government of Nakuru has started a Sh80 million project within the Central Business District to construct telecommunications ducts aimed at reducing the number of fibre optic cuts, saving millions of shillings lost in repairs and downtime.
Nakuru City Manager Gitau Thabanja says the ducts which will be shared by all providers are expected to be ready by May this year, and will initially be used to lay Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) camera and street light cables that are being installed by the County Government along Kenyatta Avenue, Mburu Gichua and Moi Roads.
The move is set to benefit providers such as Airtel, Safaricom and Telkom Kenya among others that have invested billions of shillings in fiber optic infrastructure and incur millions in repairs and maintenance.
The utility ducts will enable installation of cables without having to dig up roads within the CBD.
“We are building the ducts so that whenever a new Telco operator opens shop in Nakuru, it does not have to excavate. They now will be only required to obtain authorization after making necessary payments, to lay their cables in the utility ducts. In the past, such excavations, besides causing damage to existing cables, have also disrupted movement of people and vehicles,” Mr Thabanja pointed out.
He stated that the county administration is keen on ending numerous complaints from the telcos, about destruction of fibre optic cables which happens after work on major water and road projects have started.
The project, the City Manager indicated, is in line with the Central Government’s National Broadband Strategy which among other things seeks to reduce the cost of doing business by ensuring that operators share infrastructure.
Speaking when he inspected progress of the project, Mr Thabanja said the devolved unit is keen on supporting the national government’s efforts to boost the uptake of quality Internet, adding that a growing number of Kenyans had embraced online jobs and e-government services.
“The operators have invested heavily in Nakuru City. The telecommunications ducts are one of the ways through which we will be seeking to protect such investments. In future, we will extend the project outside the CBD especially in those areas that experience high rates of uncontrolled development,” he said.
Mr Thabanja appealed for calm from business persons whose premises had been affected by the project and sought to assure them it will be completed within stipulated timelines.
He added, “The county administration is conscious of the fact that excavation […]