The Vision of the Nairobi City County Government is ‘to be a county where NMT is the mode of choice for short and medium trips'.
In Kenya non-motorized transport is the most widely used mode of transport. For example, in Nairobi, about 47% people walk for their daily trips (JICA Study on Master Plan for Urban Transport in Nairobi, 2006). But despite being the dominant mode of transport in Kenya, NMT is least considered in transport planning and investments. The majority of road infrastructure investments in Kenya are channeled towards building roads to facilitate efficient movement of vehicles as opposed to movement of the majority of road users; pedestrians and cyclists.
Nairobi NMT Policy
In 2015 the UN Environment Share the Road Programme - with the support of the FIA Foundation - helped the Nairobi City County Government launch an NMT Policy for Nairobi which included a first of its kind commitment in Africa - earmarking 20% of their road construction budget to NMT investment.
The Vision of the Nairobi City County Government Non-Motorized Transport Policy is ‘to be a County where NMT is the mode of choice for short and medium trips’. The Nairobi NMT Policy is an exemplar in many respects, particularly when it comes to intensive stakeholder engagement, and developing clear indicators and goals, linking measurable outputs and outcomes to objectives.
The policy subtitled ‘Toward NMT as a mode of choice’, aims to develop and maintain a transport system that fully integrates NMT as part of the Nairobi transport system. It provides a clear set of actions and aims, as well as an action and implementation plan, a pilot project/evaluate approach, as well as a ‘quick wins package’ – ‘interventions that can be implemented in a short time using existing general information, using small investments at many locations, and having high easily measurable immediate impacts’.
Click here to see the Nairobi city Non Motorized Transport policy document.
Clean Air 4 Schools
International Air quality exchange for school children
The FIA Foundation funded an air quality exchange project between London, Delhi and Nairobi schools, for students to learn about their environment and share their experiences. The Nairobi component was coordinated by the Share the Road Programme with support from KUWA, a local NGO.
- Townsend School in South London
- Maharaja Agarsain Public School in North West New Delhi
- Milimani Primary School in Nairobi
Levels of nitrogen dioxide (NOx), a harmful pollutant that comes from vehicle exhausts, particularly diesel vehicles, were tested by students using a ‘citizen-science’ toolkit, measuring the air quality around their schools and local highways. Students learnt about the impact of air pollution to become ‘air quality champions’, raising awareness and promoting change in their local area.
Citizen science is a powerful way of engaging communities in issue such as poor air quality and helps empower individuals to be a part of the solution. The educational programme was designed to teach children and parents alike about air pollution, enabling behavioral changes and empowering them to call for wider change.
Successes in Nairobi
An overall understanding and importance of air pollution was highlighted. The school had never had a project where air pollution was the theme and the Environment Club of the school were introduced to the air pollution for the first time. There was more awareness from the questions asked, and from the children having to think about their journey to and from school, reflect on illnesses they have been exposed to and linking this to air quality around them.
Challenges in Nairobi
With a methodology of workshops, assemblies and surveys, the children were engaged in conversations and dialogues and given room to present their developments to their fellow students. The workshops were the most effective as the children engaged in deeper conversations however when it came to presenting in the school assemblies, keeping the whole schools attention (over 1200 children) was difficult. The final assembly was worthwhile and seeing fellow classmates perform raised awareness and the Ambassadors felt like they were validated.
Trademark East Africa prioritize NMT for Mombasa project
The Share the Road Programme has been working with Trade Mark East Africa, an East African not-for profit company established in 2010 to support the growth of trade - both regional and international - in East Africa. Share the Road has encouraged Trademark East Africa to consider the impact of their projects on pedestrians and cyclists.
In 2017 Trademark East Africa commenced plans for a project in the port city of Mombasa, in Kenya focused on improving roads to the port and truck holding grounds. The design of these roads will include non-motorized transport facilities equal to approximately 23km.