The contractor who will dual the 22-kilometre stretch of the black-spot Sachang’wan on the Nakuru-Eldoret highway will be unveiled next month for the Sh500 million project to start in March.
The works will take one year to complete, and not six months as previously announced in December. The government had also planned that the building of the killer section that claimed many lives in December would take off in January or February.
Bids were closed on Thursday and their assessment is expected to take two weeks, said the Kenya National Highways Authority (Kenha).
“Bids for the construction of a dual carriageway were received on Thursday 18th January and will be reviewed over the next two weeks,” said the Kenha assistant director of communication Charles Njogu.
The road construction is aimed at minimising the number of accidents at the deadly spot. The contract will see expansion of the 22-kilometre stretch running from Sobea to Kibunja.
“The road is expected to commence in March 2018 and will take one year to complete. The tender was advertised in December 19th. It’s an open tender which has attracted so many bidders,” said Mr Njogu.
Mr Njogu, who was speaking to Business Daily in a phone interview, said the scope of the work will include construction of dual carriage way at the climbing lane section and separation of traffic, as well as installation of Jersey barrier.
The design also provides for the construction of a lorry checking point at the beginning of the 10-kilometre descend to assess the braking systems of vehicles on the road.
The stretch will also have road signs including informatory and warning signs.
The stretch on the Nakuru-Eldoret highway has become synonymous with gruesome accidents that have claimed hundreds of lives over the years.
For instance, last December, 36 Kenyans lost their lives at Salgaa area along the Nakuru-Eldorect Highway which prompted the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) to impose a night travel ban on the Public Service Vehicles. The ban has however been lifted.
The Salgaa accident involved a truck and bus and it happened at Migaa area around 3.30am.
The bus was travelling towards Nakuru and according to witnesses, the driver left his lane and collided with an oncoming trailer.