Southern Bypass to be temporarily closed on Sunday

The Nairobi Southern Bypass will on Sunday be temporarily closed for this year’s Standard Chartered Nairobi Marathon, starting and ending at Uhuru Gardens.

In a notice, the Kenya National Highway Authority (Kenha) said that the road will be closed from Ole Sereni interchange to Kikiyu town from Saturday, October 28, 2023, at midnight to Sunday, October 29, 2023, at 2pm.

“Kenha wishes to notify the public of a temporary closure of Nairobi Southern Bypass from Ole Sereni interchange to Kikiyu town,” the authority said.

Motorists were advised to plan accordingly, and use Mombasa Road (A8) from Ole Sereni Interchange through Uhuru Highway and vice versa as the alternative route.

National Traffic Commandant Mary Omari urged runners to use the southern bypass, where the Nairobi Traffic Department will manage road closures and detours in order to ensure smooth traffic flow.

“To make this marathon a success, we have created a schedule of road closures and detours. These measures will redirect traffic between Saturday 11pm and Sunday 1:30pm. This might cause temporary inconveniences but bear in mind it will ensure the safety and success of this marathon,” she said.

According to the organisers, a total of 22,000 participants will grace the 20th edition of the annual race.

Peter Gitau, the chairman of the Local Organising Committee, announced Wednesday from the turnout, 1,013 participants will field in the full marathon (42 kilometres), 6.500 in half marathon (21km), 9,500 in 10 km and 4,470 in 5km.

“We had targeted 25,000 participants but we are still happy to have netted 22,000 when we closed entries on Sunday,” said Gitau, adding that they are pleased to lure an elite field of 300 for the full marathon down from 200 last year.

Gitau, who was speaking at Uhuru Gardens during the road closure press briefing, pleaded with participants to adhere to the reporting time, which will help ease congestion.

All six races will start along the Southern Bypass opposite the Carnivore Restaurant, but the 42km, 21km and 10km races will finish inside the Uhuru Gardens, while the 5km along the Southern Bypass.

The 42km race will start along the Southern Bypass opposite the Carnivore Restaurant before the participants’ head towards Ole Sereni Hotel for the U-turn at ICD Business Park.

They will head back to Ole Sereni Hotel on the opposite way all the way past Ngong Road Interchange before making a U-turn for the finish at the Uhuru Gardens.

The winners of the full marathon will receive Sh2m each for both the men’s and women’s categories.

In an effort to reduce the carbon footprint, electric bikes will be deployed to follow and assist runners in case of health problems. These silent, zero-emission vehicles will provide essential medical support while keeping the air clean for both participants and the city.

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