A Pioneering Smart City in Kenya
In the face of overwhelming pollution, overpopulation, and a growing wealth gap in Nairobi, Konza City is a solution that could help Kenya prosper economically and socially for years to come.
Konza city or Konza technopolis is a new city in Kenya built on a 5,000-acre plot of land. The city is designed as a science and technology hub, an economic development project that seeks to create 50,000 jobs within its first five years.
The government aims to make KTC the country’s first smart city by 2022.
Konza sits in Machakos County, 60 kilometers from Nairobi city. The city is located on the Nairobi-Mombasa highway and has easy access to other urban centers. This will make it easier for people living and working in Konza City to travel around Kenya easily and support industries such as logistics, tourism, and manufacturing.
Major cities near Konza include Thika (117km), Mavoko (53km), and Machakos (36km). The Athi River runs through this area which means there are plenty of opportunities for water sports like rafting or canoeing and other outdoor activities like hiking or bird watching.
Why was Konza city built
In its most basic form, the Kenyan government wanted to create a smart city to boost Kenya’s economy and attract tech companies. They envisioned Konza City as a hub for information technology (IT), becoming Africa’s answer to Silicon Valley. This vision goes back to 2008 when then-president Mwai Kibaki first announced his plans for Vision 2030, which included building a thriving IT sector to reduce unemployment and foster economic growth. The Kenya ICT Board also has an ambitious goal of transforming Kenya into an ICT hub by 2022—a goal that is still being pursued today, with Konza City as the centerpiece of their efforts.
The design of Konza city is based on sustainability principles and incorporates technologies that contribute to a cleaner, more efficient environment. The city is pedestrian-friendly, with many walking paths throughout its streets; one such path, runs through what will be known as the Central Mall or Central Business District (CBD). This area will contain retail stores, offices, and restaurants.
In the future, Konza Technology City could become a world capital for smart solutions in energy, health care, education, finance, and technology itself. Imagine if you could help your community by bringing your own ideas to life? That’s what Konza Technology City hopes to encourage through its unique structure and programs.
Konza City will have everything other cities have, plus a few futuristic extras. Autonomous vehicles will take you where you need to go, while robots with trash-collecting duties scoot along rails in the streets. The city will be clean and green.