Kilifi and Taita-Taveta counties are set to receive a significant boost from the government’s plan to construct the Malindi-Sala Gate road project, linking Malindi town and Tsavo East National Park, which is already 70 percent complete.
The Sh4.2 billion State-funded road, launched by President Uhuru Kenyatta back in 2016 will also see the tourism sector in Kilifi and Taita-Taveta grow significantly, attracting both local and international tourists.
According to the tourism Cabinet Secretary, Najib Balala, the government’s move to major on infrastructure is to ease transport as it is alleged that it would take three to four hours for one to travel from Malindi to the park for game drives.
“The whole infrastructure will be completed. From Lamu, there will be a tarmac road to the national park, and from Malindi to Tsavo. Seventy percent of that road (Malindi-Sala gate) is complete, and then we have the dualing of Malindi to Diani. In the next three to four years it will be complete.
“Besides connection between Mombasa and the South Coast through the ferry, we are building a cable car for passengers and more importantly a bridge to connect the two areas,” he said.
Mr. Balala brought to the attention of critical stakeholders in the tourism that the government was geared to ensure that the likoni channel congestion was cleared and that it had found a lasting solution. He made the remarks during the recent International Tourism Bourse in Berlin. The Likoni Channel is well knowns as it’s the hub of operations for five ferries — Jambo, Kwale, Nyayo, Kilindini, and Harambee.
The channel is used by over 300,000 people and 6,000 vehicles in crossing to the other side daily. The process which is supposed to take 10 minutes can extend up to an hour in the event when a vessel breakdown.
According to the CS, the investment will play a vital role as a tourist will only use forty minutes to travel from Moi International Airport as opposed to the previous period of two hours to the South Coast.
The proposed Sh80 billion Likoni bridge is also set to end the Likoni ferry woes as the bridge will link Mombasa Island to the South Coast and will operate concurrently with the ferries.
“The bridge will connect South Coast and Mombasa,” he said.
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