Kenya's SGR Tunnel, an Engineering First in the Region

By Allan Olingo

Kenya is set to become the second country in Africa, after South Africa, to have the longest railway tunnel, a 7.14km civil engineering feat on the escarpment between Nairobi and Naivasha.

Engineers from China Road and Bridges Corporation (CRBC), the SGR contractor, are already nine months into the construction of the tunnel, which comprises three sets: a 4.5 kilometre stretch with a buried depth of 108 metres; a 1km one with a buried depth of 46 metres, and another 1.64km stretch.

The engineers at the 4.5km tunnel at Em Bulbul in Kajiado County, south of Nairobi, are using the New Austrian Tunneling Method (NATM), which involves full-scale excavation.