Market News

Kiambu spooks realtors with private land order

build

A construction site. FILE PHOTO | NMG

jameskariuki-img

Summary

  • Property developers say public land management laws allowing county governments to possess reserved public utility plots in gated communities must be reviewed to safeguard investments.
  • The call came as Kiambu ordered developers to surrender the land to the county amidst a war of words with its largest developer, Tatu City, causing jitters in the property hotspot.

Property developers say public land management laws allowing county governments to possess reserved public utility plots in gated communities must be reviewed to safeguard investments.

The call came as Kiambu ordered developers to surrender the land to the county amidst a war of words with its largest developer, Tatu City, causing jitters in the property hotspot.

Kenya Property Realtors Association (KPRA) said county governments cannot be trusted to properly use the parcels for public good as many had re-allocated the properties for other uses. Vice chairman Gerald Githinji, who once served as Kiambu’s deputy governor, said any bid to seize public utility plots within gated communities would make the property lose value.

He said developers and land owners also stood to lose the opportunity of selling the plots to investors for purpose-specific developments such as private schools, shopping complexes, clubs, gyms, premium recreational parks as well as water gardens among others.

“Current development realities dictate that the Physical Planning Act must be reviewed with a clear definition on ‘surrender’ and ‘reservation’ made to enable Kenya to continue attracting investments for such developments,” he said.

Nairobi, Kiambu, Mombasa, Kwale, Kilifi, Kajiado, Murang’a and Machakos are among counties that have attracted multi-billion shilling investments that promise buyers of the houses tenant-only access to various amenities such as lawns.