Construction costs in Nakuru to shoot up as county mulls new laws

Friday, June 5th, 2020 00:00 |
Nakuru Governor Lee Kinyanjui. Photo/PD/FILE

DEVELOPERS: Construction costs within Nakuru are set to shoot up as the county seeks to introduce a clause compelling all developers to present a geotechnical report before any approval is made. 

Each developer and prospective home owners will be required to submit the report from a certified geologist revealing the earth profile, as well as design and construction recommendations. 

The move follows a series of sinkholes and fault lines developing in most parts of the county in recent weeks, with experts saying that the same pauses a risk to buildings. 

While receiving a preliminary report from Kenya Electricity Generating Company, (KenGen) and Geothermal Development Company geologists, Governor Lee Kinyanjui said the clause will go a long way in ensuring the safety of its residents. 

Kinyanjui revealed that the county engineers will come up with standards to ensure any building put up is compliant, adding that the county has already stopped development and construction activities in Shabaab area and parts of its environs. 

“We will not approve any plans until we have a detailed geological report from KenGen and GDC which will be done in the next 60 days that will allow us to make any decision affecting these areas,” said Kinyanjui. 

According to the report, the southwest of Nakuru town is prone to incidences of ground subsidence especially during the heavy rain season.  

It revealed that the zones affected by subsidence are typically linear, trending approximately north-south conforming to the structural trend of the larger Rift Valley.  

Further it states that the ground subsidence incidences have in the past led to collapse of houses and damage to roads that happen to be located above the affected linear zones. 

“Anomalies similar to those detected across fresh subsidence zones were also detected at locations where there was no surface expression of subsidence,” read part of the report. 

With this new development, analysts say though the report is necessary due to the current phenomenon, the document will have a huge impact on construction costs as the report will be issued at a fee. 

Susan Wairimu from Super Home Developers said obtaining services of a geologist to conduct a study of the earth profile will be an added cost to many noting that the county should come up with cost sharing ways with them. 

According to Wairimu, study of an area does not take a day, adding that if the clause is effected, the same will stall most of their construction plans and deadlines they have been given by their clients. 

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