Smart Cities harness the benefits of innovation and information technology by improving the lives of their inhabitants and by becoming more streamlined, efficient, and sustainable. Some of the example focus areas include intelligent urban transport management systems and infrastructure, digitization and electrification of transport infrastructure, move to sustainable energy systems, efficient buildings, better air quality, and use of technology to improve and make more affordable health services and social care.
Laikipia has embarked on a Smart Towns imitative as part of the Governor’s original manifesto and as part of the County’s Integrated Development Plan 2018-2022.
8 towns in Laikipia have been selected to pilot the Smart Towns agenda:
Nanyuki, Rumuruti, Wiyumeririe, Kinamba
Ol Jabet, Naibor, DolDol and Nyahururu
Each Smart Town is characterized by a multi-disciplinary approach, all aimed at a safe, clean, functional modern township with commercial centers that serve the needs of its residents.
THE SMART TOWN PACKAGE INCLUDES:
- Development of spatial plans for all towns that use zoning and building codes to enforce standards and environmental laws
- Solid waste management with an emphasis on recycling principles
- Name all roads and streets, and provide residents with geo-referenced addresses to provide improved access and service delivery
- Pave all markets and streets
- Create pedestrian walkways, parks, and green recreation areas; Plant trees
- Create internet hotspots and improve citizen access to internet-based services
- A good portion of the Laikipia SMART Town Initiative is based on the Green Economy Strategy and Implementation Plan (GESIP) of the GOK for 2016-2030.
- GESIP is a national strategy for low carbon, resource-efficient, equitable, and inclusive socio-economic transformation.
- The Laikipia 2018-2022 budget for the Smart Towns is 1.31 B Kenya Shillings and be found in the County’s Integrated Development Plan
WHY SHOULD INVESTORS BANK ON SMART TOWNS?
Getting ahead of the curve on innovative business strategies
With the rise of smart towns, more companies will have the opportunity to develop game-changing strategies. Retailers, restaurants, and other service providers can use real-time data to analyze likely consumer choices and adjust the pricing accordingly.
Drawing top talent and driving competition.
The workers who will add the most value over the longer term want to live and work in places that offer them affordable, sustainable housing, timely and safe transportation, and a clean and pleasant atmosphere. The more we invest in smart cities, the more likely businesses will be able to draw the people they need to succeed. It also spurs competition: smart cities will allow for reduced spending on operations, transportation, and communications to refocus on developing and marketing services or products. Smart cities are best positioned to accommodate growing populations, cut down on traffic, provide water and energy efficiency improvements, reduce infrastructure expenses, modernize public transportation, and provide everyone a greater standard of living
The Private Sector has joined with the Public and County Government to identify and conserve at a minimum of 100 acres of green space.
Green space preservation is not new to urban planning, design, and development. The great cities and towns of the world already know the value of preserving green spaces. Many studies have associated green space with improved mental and physical health for city residents. Recognizing this value should allow us to develop more green space because it contributes to wider city objectives. Similarly, well-managed urban green space has a positive economic effect on the surrounding areas.
The 100 acres of Green Space is a combination of riparian areas secured by law, and oases of green spaces that serve as parks/green zones/recreation areas for the public.
Walking and bike paths link these green areas/islands, offering a cool, reflective, peaceful recreational areas and opportunities for public events.
Our Nanyuki Town Plan is dedicated to the preservation of these green spaces. But we will only succeed with the engagement of our citizens.