A couple of years ago, no one would have thought that these bare and sun-scorched dusty expanses of land were worth anything substantial.
Today however, having realised the immense potential that lies in these parcels of land, local and international investors are trooping to Konza, Machackos and Isinya to take advantage of the investment opportunities that have sprung up, thanks to the planned Konza Techno City.
The city’s first phase groundbreaking took place on December 15, 2014, and came with the promise by the Deputy President, Mr William Ruto, that the government was committed to seeing the project completed.
The Konza Techno City project will sit on 5,000 acres of land, which was procured from the Malili Ranch, located 60km South East of Nairobi.
The expected realisation of this mega project has seen remarkable development in the surrounding areas. Already, residential houses are springing up, and expected are hotels, universities, primary and secondary schools, banks, horticultural farms and hospitals.
Also planned are direct roads, such as the Konza-Lukenya, Konza-Kitengela, and Konza-Isinya-Maimahiu-Malili roads.
These and more proposed developments will definitely see increased industrial expansion and more agricultural activities, all of which is foreseen to give birth to a vibrant economy in the area.
Already, more than 300 investors have shown interest in investing in the project.
“We already have 345 investors queuing to invest in the Konza Techno City project, and we expect Sh100 billion investments from these investors,” said Ruto, during the groundbreaking ceremony.
So if you’re planning to invest in real estate, you might want to consider the area around Konza. The distance between Konza and Nairobi is about 75km, which means that commuting between the two on a daily basis will not be possible.
There will, therefore, be a need for residential houses, offices and recreational facilities around the techno city.
The Isinya, Machakos and Konza triangle is served by two major highways that link Kenya to Tanzania and to the port of Mombasa.
There is also a rail network connecting the area, as well as water supply from several boreholes, while electricity is also well-distributed
Notable developmental achievements in Konza so far, according to the Konza Technocity Development Authority (KoTDA) is the completion of a detailed Master Plan for Phase One on 400 acres, drilling and equipping of the initial seven boreholes, with a 1,000 cubic metre capacity, connection of the initial 415 volt power line, and approval of the Strategic Environmental Assessment by the National Environment Management Authority.
HIGHER LAND PRICES
According to Peter Gitau, a landowner in the area, the land around Konza town was going for between Sh20,000 and Sh30,000 an acre in 2008. Now, an acre is going for a Sh800,000, as people strategically place themselves to benefit from the Konza ICT city.
“Today, an acre of land located within 15kms from Konza Township does not cost less than Sh700,000, and if you are looking to buy within the township, prices can be as high as Sh3m per acre, a price that will go even higher as Konza takes shape.”
Prices per acre of land in Isinya town range from Sh6m for the parcels near the tarmac, and Sh1.5 million for those that are around 6km from the tarmac.
Plots in Isinya Township are going for Sh2 million. In the town environs of Machakos, the prices are lower compared with Isinya, since one can get an acre for Sh3 million.
According to Mr Gitau, all these areas have recorded up to 100 per cent price increase within the last one year.
Ruto expressed confidence that the completion of phase one in 2018 will see the project inject Sh3 billion in the Kenya economy, which will account for 2 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the country.
“Those doubting that the Silicon Valley project will not work have no idea what technology can do, it will create thousands of jobs for our youth and reinvigorate the economy of this area, the country and the region,” he added.