In the next fiscal year, pedestrians in Kigali will be able to sigh with relief because the city authorities count constructing aerial walkways to help them cross busy junctions.
Officials at KCC confirm that the detailed studies for three aerial crossings have been finalized: at the main roundabout in the city center, at Gisimenti and at Giporoso.
According to Norbert Kamana, the director of planning in Kigali City, the cost of one walkway is estimated at US$ 625,000 or about Frw 400m, which brings the total cost of the project to more than Frw 1.2 billion.
The officials say that the option of constructing the aerial pedestrian crossings was conceived as one of the alternatives to facilitate pedestrians who often have to wait endlessly for an opportunity to cross some busy junctions especially during the rush hours.
The aerial bridges are part of the city's five-year development plan which was recently unveiled by KCC. At the same time, it is planned that six major road junctions will be improved.
The plan also targets to intensify activities in road construction to ensure easy movement of people. The city for instance targets to construct 28.4 km of new asphalt roads, 100 km of stone paved roads as well as the rehabilitation of 29.5 km of tarmacced roads. Also 17 km along major public transport corridors are set to be expanded.
According to the EICV-3 report, only 24% of the city population lives at less than 20 minutes from a public transport stage, meaning that more than 70% are forced to walk long distances to access public transport. "This scenario translates not only in high transport costs but also long transit times from one point of town to the other, and increases therefore the cost of living in the city with a direct effect on even urban poverty," Kamana pointed out.