Kenya Ferry services (KFS) has announced that the express cable car service project in Mombasa will start before the end of the year.
KFS managing director Bakari Gowa said that the privately-funded project will help in reducing traffic jams at the Likoni ferry crossing channel and boost tourism in the South Coast by providing a complementary pedestrian crossing.
The plan is to erect a 1,300-metre-long cableway linking Mombasa island and the mainland, that will have up to 28 cabins making a crossing every three minutes carrying about 40 people, allowing KFS to move 11,000 commuters per hour across the channel.
In a joint press briefing yesterday with Mombasa county commissioner Evans Achoki and Kenya Maritime Authority Ports State Control officer Mbarak Zaunga, Gowa said they are finalizing on final arrangements and work will commence before the end of 2017.
“We are on the final stages of finalizing on the project. We are going to commence work before the end of the year,” said Gowa.
“Tourists to and from the South Coast will no longer be delayed. The infrastructure is also a tourist attraction in itself and offers panoramic views of Mombasa from 100 meters above the ground),” he said.
The public-private-partnership (PPP) project will be supervised by Trapos Limited, who proposed the idea to the Transport Ministry in 2013 and saw it approved by the PPP committee as required by law.
Trapos Ltd have contracted Doppelmayr- a Swiss -Austrian specialist company that manufactures urban transport systems- as a technology supplier and CFC Stanbic Bank to arrange for project funding.
The cable car project was initially estimated to cost Sh 7.4 billion (EUR70) million. KFS gave the cost of the construction as $41 million (Sh3.8 billion), excluding the cost of a feasibility study completed earlier.
At the same time Gowa said the two new ferries worth Sh 1.3 billion are being built in Turkey will arrive in the country later this year. Gowa said the ferries will be shipped in starting June this year.
“By the end of June we will start shipping in the ferries from the country they are being manufactured,” said Gowa.
KFS currently ferries over 300,000 pedestrians daily across the Likoni channel at no charge, as well as more than 6,000 vehicles.