• Dongo Kundu Bypass and the SEZ are both co-funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency.
• Mteza bridge will be the longest in Kenya at 1,440 metres, reportedly up to seven times longer than the Nyali bridge, according to previous Kenha estimates.
Construction of the Dongo Kundu bypass bridge that will connect the Mombasa West mainland to South Coast has started.
According to a Kenya National Highways Authority pamphlet, Phase 2 of Mwache and Mteza bridges project commenced on November 1.
This follows President Uhuru Kenyatta’s launch of the project on October 18 when he also presided over the groundbreaking ceremony for the establishment of Dongo Kundu Special Economic Zone (SEZ).
At the sites in Miritini, Tsunza and Mteza, the contractors have already deployed heavy machinery including drills and earthmovers.
Sections of mangrove vegetation on seafronts have been cleared to pave way for the bridges.
“This package of the Dongo Kundu Bypass will last for a duration of 48 months,” a Kenha official said on Friday.
He was speaking at the Miritini site to a group of visiting Kenya-Japan Alumni Association that was on a tour of Japanese-funded programmes at the Mombasa port and the road network under Kenha.
The Dongo Kundu Bypass and the SEZ are both co-funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
The 660m Mwache Bridge will land on the Tsunza peninsula in Kwale county where it will link up with the second Mteza bridge that will complete the South Coast mainland connection.
The Mteza bridge will be the longest in Kenya at 1,440 metres, reportedly up to seven times longer than the Nyali bridge, according to previous Kenha estimates.
The total road length between Mwache junction and Mteza will be 8.9km.
Also known as the Mombasa Southern Bypass, the about Sh25 billion dual carriageway will also serve the SEZ once complete.
Its phase two also involves the construction of a U-turn on the Tsunza peninsula.
According to the Kenha official who spoke to the Kenya-Japan Alumni Association, 80 per cent of the Mombasa Southern Bypass project is funded by JICA with the Kenyan government contributing the remaining 20 per cent.
In November 2014, Kenya signed a Sh25 billion loan agreement with JICA for its construction.
The completed first phase has already transformed Mombasa and has eased movement to and from the coastal city.
Additionally, the third phase which is also ongoing commenced on March 1 and will last for two years.
This phase consisting of a 6.9km road from Mteza and Kibundani involves construction of an interchange at the Likoni – Lunga Lunga Highway.
Edited by R.Wamochie