20 Feb

I have mentioned Mbagathi Way as a cycle friendly route before. Judging from the speeds on the descent, it’s also a motorists’ haven.

Driving down that descent on the inside lane at 80 Km/h, I remeber feeling the flinging force tagging me towards the center… Slow down ya’ll!

Mbagathi Way is probably the only main road in Nairobi that is made entirely of concrete <<< That is not counting the few sections of road paved in concrete blocks in Nairobi. This road was supposed to showcase the possibilities for road construction using concrete. They did a damn good job.

Vision 2030 needs to drive through here.

Besides the cool ramped pedestrian footbridge, I absolutely love the steel pavement foot bridges over the streams.

This past weekend I cycled along Mbagathi Way on the way to Langata Road.

In Pictures:

The top of the Mbagathi Way Pavement looks very inviting. This is the left flank leaving the Kenyatta-Ngong Road roundabout. Whoever thought up the steel foot bridges where the little streams pass was genius!

The largely disused older pedestrian footbridge with steps on either side. People prefer to cross dangerously beneath the bridge. Notice the all covered up concrete wall sides of the bridge.

The paving drops off suddenly where there are entrance ways. Stand up as you drop!

They really went crazy with these little pavement protectors. More bollards! Even harder to scoot around these three as they are close together. Two would have sufficed. Just go slow.

They did a great job on the road but did not expand the foot walk over the railway line bridge. Cars whizz dangerously close to pedestrians as they begin the steep descent. Three weeks ago a car went partially over the railing sending a pedestrian to his death on the railway line below. I hear they picked him up in pieces after the train went over him. There is now missing railing at the accident spot. Don't look down!!

The pedestrian foot bridge has a ramp. I noticed most pedestrians used the ramp going up and the stairs coming down. This bridge was made with Love, it's finished with pink terrazzo!!

On the first landing. I tried cycling up, but it's too steep. Push, iPant. Not sure if the pink terrazzo is safe when wet in the rain.

The landing at the top. The designer built it to be open sided as this area is relatively unsafe. But the city went ahead and allowed billboards to be posted on either side. Retrogressive.Imposing edifice coming up on the other side. The metal barrier running along the middle of the road still does not deter pedestrians from crossing the road beneath the bridge. I spotted a few cyclists carrying their bikes over the barrier too. SMH.

View from the top landing. Stair way on the right. Notice anything peculiar? Yes, no human faeces or litter on the top of this super clean bridge. The open sides and the regular use of the bridge make it impossible to have enough "privacy" for that.

Another steel foot bridge over a tributary stream. The unnecessary bollards are spaced too close together here Not sure what the point is for these two.

A roadside florist/tree nursery owner has turned this section into a lovely tree-lined pedestrian boulevard. Watch out for the low hanging branches!!

...and more bollards! But this entrance just outside Amani Counselling Centre has a pavement ramp! I doubt this was part of the road contractor's design. Great also for the other-wise enabled persons, though those closely placed bollards can make it hard for a wheel chair to get around.

...and more bollards approaching the Mbagathi Way-Lang'ata Road roundabout. These are well placed apart. I can scoot around on the left or right as pedestrians go between them. What's with all the bollards though?!! The lower section of Mbagathi Way is safer for the cyclist to get back on the road as it flattens out and widens entering the roundabout Just after Amani Counselling Centre. Note that the right pavement flank (the ascending side) is too narrow for cyclists and pedestrians in a section where several wall eat into the road reserve. It's safe to cycle on the road on the climbing side as traffic is slower. Careful not to fall into the open gutter!!

This is a highway of many firsts: First pedestrian footbridge with a ramp, first wholly concrete road and the first road to have soooo many bollards!! They are like miniature trees growing out the pavement them bollards!

In retrospect, there are very few trees along this concrete road.

A route that is easy on your bike and on your butt.

Happy cycling in Nairobi!! ♥Nairobi! ♥Cycling!!


6 Responses to “She❤MbagathiWay”

  1. Wilfred February 21, 2012 at 5:25 am #

    WOW impressive pictures. That footbridge looks very dangerous during wet weather. Have you ridden on Thika Road yet? #safety

    • shecyclesnairobi February 21, 2012 at 6:14 am #

      I will try it in April and report back. I found that going down the ramp was rather steep, add slippery surface to that and you could end up breaking something. Perhaps a rougher surface and a less steep gradient would help.

    • shecyclesnairobi February 21, 2012 at 6:20 am #

      I plan to go on Thika road via the former Globe roundabout area soon. Look out for it. 🙂

  2. Maureen Muthaura February 23, 2012 at 4:44 am #

    So the reason for the bollards is to discourage motorcycles which have a habit of using the pedestrian walk (see the UN road model). The spacing though I think is adequate enough for bicycles.

    • shecyclesnairobi February 23, 2012 at 4:54 am #

      Yeah the spaces between the bollards work when there are no pedestrians. I gets tricky in the morning and evening rush. These shots were taken on a Sunday morning.

    • shecyclesnairobi February 23, 2012 at 4:56 am #

      The spaces between the bollards work when there are no pedestrians. In the morning and evening rush it can get tricky. Two bollards are sufficient I suppose.

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