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Improved security ups property value along Ruiru-Kamiti road – THE STANDARD

Posted by lifestyleestatesadmins on March 14, 2022


Once a dreaded area due to high crime rates, the Ruiru-Kamiti Road in Kiambu County is increasingly becoming an attractive investment destination for home buyers and real estate developers.

The area had been known for carjackings, muggings and at times, abandoned vehicles used to commit robberies.

Abandoned houses, incomplete buildings and closed shops were a common sight along the Kiambu-Kamiti-Ruiru Road.

Unkempt bushes that stretched along the road summed it all.

The area, which stretches from Kamiti Corner, near Kamiti Maximum Prison to the outskirts of Ruiru town, had been turned into a criminals’ paradise and driving on the road, sometimes even during the day, was unsettling.

But in the recent past, the area has been getting a major facelift as investors rush to put up real estate projects.

This follows increased demand for housing due to enhanced security. Home Bridge Limited Company is among firms that have been attracted by improved security and growing demand for housing in the area and are setting up a multi-billion-shilling project.

The Lifestyle Heights venture is an apartment project by the company that appeared risky at the onset but is turning out to be remarkably successful.

Peter Karoki, a director at the firm said the company is putting up 1,200 apartment units in the area on a 30-acre piece of land.

Speaking when he handed over 186 units that have already been completed in the second phase of the project, Karoki cited security as one of the reasons behind the success of the project so far.

“We handed over another 208 units last December. I am pleased to note that we have 80 per cent occupancy,” he noted.

The company had similar projects in the Syokimau area in Machakos County, where it built 70 maisonettes and 210 apartment units.

“We had two main challenges; getting the finances for the project and uptake was not so good because people did now if the place was good for habitation. The place had been viewed as totally insecure,” noted Karoki.

But he was quick to point out that with improved security, the area has seen a lot of development in the recent past.

“The area has developed fast. We have schools and transport to town and to the airport has been made easy. We also have a lot of water from Ruiru-Juja and Water Sewerage Company,” he added.

The company has built houses on 10 acres of land and has another 20 acres for the entire 1,200 units.

This is after it secured Sh2.5 billion from Kenya Commercial Bank for the project. “Buyers are many so we don’t have problems repaying the loan,” he noted.

Karoki attributed the success of the project – apart from improved security to paying attention to what most home buyers want.

“People appreciate our new way of doing things. Children have a large play area, we have gazebos, a shopping complex that could be owed by the community among other facilities,” he said.

The area has been getting a major facelift as investors in other sector players in the economy rush to put up businesses.

Karoki said the third phase of the project will have a swimming pool and a bigger playground and addition to the existing clubhouse, gym and children play area.

One of the development projects that has transformed the area is Tatu City with high-rise flats that have given way to a concrete jungle that will house 150,000 people and Kijani Ridge, a posh estate within the city.

This has caught the attention of the Kiambu County Development Implementation Coordination Committee (CDICC) which has reaffirmed its commitment to support Tatu City.

The 5,000-acre Special Economic Zone (SEZ) has not only assured residents of their security but also created thousands of jobs and homes through private sector investment.

Kiambu County Commissioner Wilson Wanyanga who chairs the CDICC has been spearheading discussions around the improvement of key roads, power, water, security, and ICT infrastructure.

“We are impressed with the progress we have witnessed at Tatu City, with more than 5,000 jobs created, dozens of companies operating and affordable housing completed. Our mandate as the government is to support such investment,” he said.

National Police Kiambu County Commander Ali Nuno said there were plans to have a police post inside Tatu city.

Another housing project next to Ruturo shopping centre is Legacy Homes which kicked off its first phase late last year.

Yvonne Waweru one of the homeowners said she had been swindled by land buying companies in 2016 when she started her journey of owning a home.

“Having lived abroad, I wanted a house that is not only beautiful on the inside but also the outside. I love the green areas, serenity and security not to forget the good schools that are only a kilometre away,” she added.

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