National Security Council, Kenya’s top security organ, has approved a plan to erect a temporary 529-metre floating bridge across Likoni Channel.
Exclusive documents received from Kenya National Highways Authority (KeNHA) reveals that the said bridge will ease congestion on ferries and lower risk of contracting Covid-19 on the vessels.
“Construction of the floating pedestrian bridge is a high-level decision in the government response to the Covid-19 pandemic and the human congestion at the Likoni Channel,” according to the report which indicates the project has been awarded to M/S China Road and Bridge Corporation by the State Department of Infrastructure through KeNHA.
China Road and Bridge Corporation will construct the Likoni floating bridge in Mombasa at Sh1.5 billion.
A contract has been signed between CRBC and Kenya National Highways Authority according to a May 5 statement on the Chinese firm’s website.
The project will include the construction of a 660-metre pedestrian bridge stretching from north to south of Likoni. It is funded by the government.
The Likoni channel ferries an estimated 300,000 passengers and over 6,000 cars daily. However, it is always not smooth with the Kenya Ferry Services vessels which break down frequently.
“This plan has taken into account such aspects as timeliness, economy, reliability and practicality,” KeNHA said in May, this year.
A CRBC official told our source that the bridge involves the construction of the pile foundations and a Bailey-type approach bridge with movable main steel bridge at the middle of the channel that allows ship movements.
“The Kenyan government has recently promulgated a series of pandemic prevention and control measures, such as restrictions on transport capacity and curfews resulting in surging pressure on ferry traffic,” the statement said.
A technical committee with representatives from key stakeholders was formed for effective coordination of the project at all stages which include, design, construction and operations.
“Evidence from National Surveillance Systems indicate concerns on compliance with public health guidelines at Likoni Ferry,” a top ministry official said.
The multi-million deal was inked on April 13 between National Security Council, Kenya National Highways Authority and the Chinese contractor.
According to the document, the effective date for commencement of the contract is May 20. It is to be completed in six months with November 27 stated as date of completion.
I have to inform you that the exact science and technology is yet to be explained but in the document, it sounds complex and futuristic.
Seatle has the worlds largest floating bridge and is actually a fantastic project if only, the science used will be applied to the CRBC’s new project.
It is also not clear whether the proposed bridge will be rolled back later. We were also not able to locate where the exact bridge will be erected on the channel.