Editorials

New city trains offer relief

UhuruTrain1011hr

A train hostess waits to usher in commutters to a DMU at the newly refurbished Nairobi Central Railway Station on November 10. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE | NMG

BDgeneric_logo

Summary

  • The corporation’s old rickety locomotives have failed to deliver a reliable commuting alternative to the chaotic traffic jams on city roads. On Monday, the agency released the schedules for the new trains.
  • Rapid urbanisation has left many centres and towns around Nairobi crowded, creating unending congestion at bus stops and traffic on link roads due to a lack of mass transit services.
  • Management of the city’s transport system has been erratic, causing commuters and motorists pain from hours spent in traffic as well as lowering productivity.

The Kenya Railways’ move to reinvest in its underutilised rail transport facilities along the city routes is welcome.

The corporation’s old rickety locomotives have failed to deliver a reliable commuting alternative to the chaotic traffic jams on city roads. On Monday, the agency released the schedules for the new trains.

Rapid urbanisation has left many centres and towns around Nairobi crowded, creating unending congestion at bus stops and traffic on link roads due to a lack of mass transit services.

Management of the city’s transport system has been erratic, causing commuters and motorists pain from hours spent in traffic as well as lowering productivity.

In the developed world, commuter trains are the most reliable means for urban transit. In addition to decongesting the roads, trains contribute to the reduction accidents and greenhouse gas emissions that add to global warming.

With the trains expected to more than double passenger rail traffic from the current 15,000 to 40,000 Kenya Railways now has another opportunity to provide an efficient and convenient mode of transport.