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Discussion Starter · #101 ·
The problem with MGR is availability of rolling stock. Meter gauge is becoming obsolete save for a few countries in Europe. Kenya shouldn't build any new meter gauge rail. Even the existing light rail ones should slowly be overhauled to standard gauge. It will make it easier to procure rolling stock.
There’s no problem with Meter gauge. They’re still rail companies churning out meter gauge trains.

It doesn’t make sense spending money to build a 5km SGR track. It’s not smart and literally locks out the rest of the commuter rail network.

We should go for a hybrid system like Japan. Where it’s high speed Shinkasen trains run on broad gauge which is used for longer high speed traveling. And a wide majority of its commuter rail system is completely narrow gauge and fully electric which is used for city commuters and direct airport link.


This is the Narita Express it connects Tokyo City Center with Narita Airport and it moves at speeds of a 130kms per hour.

With system similar like that in Nairobi. A direct link with Nairobi City and JKIA will only take 7-10mins.
 

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I don't like his arguments but I think on this one he's kinda right. This one seems more of a kickback or just courting the French for any kind of business than a genuine plan to sort the transport mess between JKIA and the city. Opportunism at its best. Most of these European countries are desperately in need of business in promising African nations and the French just happen to be aggressively pursuing the Chinese route.
Well for him he thinks 14B is a lot to build a link between airport and syokimau (about 5KM) and upgrade the rest of tracks (17KM). I am no engineer, but his intention are just to evoke emotions from his followers who mostly like his rhetoric. He is an intelligent guy but sometimes he uses that to fool and mislead people who believe in him, in other words, his intellectually dishonest when we wants to perpetuate a certain agenda.

I am not going to argue if 14B is enough or less for the project, but based on his argument, has he considered that it may involve electrification, rolling stock, dualling, signalling etc. We know the current tracks where just refurbished based on available resources by NYS, but one can tell even though the 'works' has helped, it's still not a perfect job. I however think the 14B would have connected more with Kenyans if it was going to boost the general efforts by KR to connect more places with meter gauge rather than JKIA itself. Majority of Kenyans don't use JKIA so they can not connect with this project, though JKIA is very important it contributes a lot to the GDP of Kenya. Having seem the video of that Italian who has conned by matatu people trying to get to CBD, I think we need a seamless train connection to CBD from the airport though. Not everyone who lands at JKIA wants to pay for an expensive taxi and others prefer immersing themselves in public transport. I am not just taking about foreigners but even Kenyans who. travel a lot and use JKIA frequently. This will boost JKIA profile and image of the country.
 

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Discussion Starter · #103 ·
Those with a little time to burn. Watch this


This is why I’m adamant we keep the MGR functioning and we build upon and extend its network.

And the SGR corridor moves from two of our ports and connects our neighbors and beyond.
 

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Also keep in mind there has to be a place to exchange goods between the SGR and the MGR. At the moment goods to/from Nanyuki can be transferred at Nairobi ICD and, in future, goods to/from the MGR lines in the west at Naivasha ICD.

Either you need to keep the metre gauge on Syokimau-Nairobi Central or you need a new facility for freight around Makadara, which is less efficient as it would require containers to the Nanyuki line to make one more stop on the way.

I think keeping the metre gauge is preferable. There are enough metre gauge railways remaining in the world to keep rolling stock design for it economically possible. I am also thinking of the Euskotren system in northern Spain, a very successful electric metre gauge railway that is actually pretty similar to the Nairobi one: frequent trains on the urban routes mixed with some services to places further away. It is also built out of 19th century narrow gauge railways that have been partially upgraded to double track. I think it shows what the Nairobi system could become.
 

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For a country like Kenya that never buys new trains, meter gauge limits our options. Used standard gauge trains are more available. It's also easier to maintain and can be serviced with the new SGR.

Japan builds it's own rolling stock, so they can run on whatever gauge they want.

All the light rail is Kenya has to be rebuilt anyway because the design speed is too slow. It doen't make sense to build new meter gauge. There's no rationale for that.

The 5km Standard Gauge means there will be a train switch at Syokimau. This line is designed for tourists who will come from Mombasa - Syokiamau - JKIA and vice versa.

As you can see standard gauge rail opens up opportunities for rolling stock in almost all of Europe, The Americas and China.

The reason we bought the DMUs from Spain is because it's one of the last countries in Europe to have a none electrifies Meter Gauge

860486



There’s no problem with Meter gauge. They’re still rail companies churning out meter gauge trains.

It doesn’t make sense spending money to build a 5km SGR track. It’s not smart and literally locks out the rest of the commuter rail network.

We should go for a hybrid system like Japan. Where it’s high speed Shinkasen trains run on broad gauge which is used for longer high speed traveling. And a wide majority of its commuter rail system is completely narrow gauge and fully electric which is used for city commuters and direct airport link.


This is the Narita Express it connects Tokyo City Center with Narita Airport and it moves at speeds of a 130kms per hour.

With system similar like that in Nairobi. A direct link with Nairobi City and JKIA will only take 7-10mins.
 

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Discussion Starter · #106 ·
For a country like Kenya that never buys new trains, meter gauge limits our options. Used standard gauge trains are more available. It's also easier to maintain and can be serviced with the new SGR.

Japan builds it's own rolling stock, so they can run on whatever gauge they want.

All the light rail is Kenya has to be rebuilt anyway because the design speed is too slow. It doen't make sense to build new meter gauge. There's no rationale for that.

The 5km Standard Gauge means there will be a train switch at Syokimau. This line is designed for tourists who will come from Mombasa - Syokiamau - JKIA and vice versa.
You completely ignored what I said. So let me ask you will a tourist know the difference between MGR and SGR when riding on a train?
 
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The map is not quite complete - many more countries (France, Slovakia, ...) have some metre gauge railways. The pink dots do represent a significant amount of railways, although arguably many of them are electrified, commonly at 1500V DC.

A lot of second-hand standard gauge diesel stock is already going to Eastern Europe, and that might drive up the price of second-hand standard gauge stock.
 

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Of course not. I really like the video on Japanese meter gauge rail you shared. It's pretty good. But again, they make their own rolling stock for those tracks we can't even build our own rail. So its apples and oranges. Meter gauge is a boutique option for rail unless we anticipate that we will soon be advanced enough to build our own trains, I don't see meter gauge as an economic alternative. One of the biggest selling points of standard gauge is that we can buy relatively cheap but high-quality trains esp from China
You completely ignored what I said. So let me ask you will a tourist know the difference between MGR and SGR when riding on a train?
 

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Discussion Starter · #109 ·
Of course not. I really like the video on Japanese meter gauge rail you shared. It's pretty good. But again, they make their own rolling stock for those tracks we can't even build our own rail. So its apples and oranges. Meter gauge is a boutique option for rail unless we anticipate that we will soon be advanced enough to build our own trains, I don't see meter gauge as an economic alternative. One of the biggest selling points of standard gauge is that we can buy relatively cheap but high-quality trains esp from China
I have seen the Kenya Railway Workshops. And I’m convinced that Kenya has the skills and capabilities to build its own rolling stock or heck even start refurbishing old second hand trains and modernizing them.

The commuter rail coaches are refurbished by KR. And I think with a bit more imagination they can make them even better.

I’m not even an economist and I see the vast potential of the MGR track. Hence why I have been fighting for it, we’ve barely scratched the surface of its potential.
 

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I have seen the Kenya Railway Workshops. And I’m convinced that Kenya has the skills and capabilities to build its own rolling stock or heck even start refurbishing old second hand trains and modernizing them.

The commuter rail coaches are refurbished by KR. And I think with a bit more imagination they can make them even better.

I’m not even an economist and I see the vast potential of the MGR track. Hence why I have been fighting for it, we’ve barely scratched the surface of its potential.
If we can do wonders for matatus, why not trains?
 

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Discussion Starter · #112 ·

1943 you can see the Kenya Railway Workshops churning out artillery shells. But you can also see them constructing wagons and bogeys.


The traverser at the Kenya Railway Workshop is running on electric power. Now think why can’t such a system be deployed on the MGR network within Nairobi and you realize how badly we have mismanaged our railway.
 

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Any indication what route/alignment this proposed rail will follow or once it links up from airport to Syokimau it will follow same path as embakasi train?
 

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14billion Ksh is equivalent to $128.7million nominal and $262.6million PPP which for 5km of track translates to $25.74m/km (nominal) and $52.5m/km (PPP)
For comparison with other recent African rail builds, This particular line is the second cheapest. Though that does not remove from the fact that it is still an Airport rail link which tend to have to least cost benefit ratio of all forms of rail transit. In my opinion building a real commuter rail network within Nairobi is of better value and greater impact than this project that will barely see any use relative to its costs.

893206
 

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I think this is one of those situations where the full details of the project haven't been released and we're relying on the media for info which is usually inaccurate. I remember when it was published that the cost of Likino bridge was $2bn and everyone was freaking out, only to find out that that was the cost of the entire Mombasa Port Area Development scheme.

France has built extensive light rail in West Africa and I highly doubt two state visits both in Kenya and France and Macron visiting the Nairobi station was to discuss 5km of rail. It's probable something more elaborate is in the works with France to build extensive commuter rail. This is probably the first phase of a much larger project.

14billion Ksh is equivalent to $128.7million nominal and $262.6million PPP which for 5km of track translates to $25.74m/km (nominal) and $52.5m/km (PPP)
For comparison with other recent African rail builds, This particular line is the second cheapest. Though that does not remove from the fact that it is still an Airport rail link which tend to have to least cost benefit ratio of all forms of rail transit. In my opinion building a real commuter rail network within Nairobi is of better value and greater impact than this project that will barely see any use relative to its costs.

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Being an extension of the existing line no doubt it will improve the other services on the route as well, simply because the tracks will be upgraded. If the electric airport train can also take Syokimau and SGR link passengers, the Spanish DMUs could move to the Ruiru/Kikuyu lines to provide a more frequent service there. But unfortunately we don't know such details yet.

I'm looking forward to landing at JKIA, then taking the airport train to Central or Makadara to change to the Ruiru train.
 

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There’s no problem with Meter gauge. They’re still rail companies churning out meter gauge trains.

It doesn’t make sense spending money to build a 5km SGR track. It’s not smart and literally locks out the rest of the commuter rail network.

We should go for a hybrid system like Japan. Where it’s high speed Shinkasen trains run on broad gauge which is used for longer high speed traveling. And a wide majority of its commuter rail system is completely narrow gauge and fully electric which is used for city commuters and direct airport link.


This is the Narita Express it connects Tokyo City Center with Narita Airport and it moves at speeds of a 130kms per hour.

With system similar like that in Nairobi. A direct link with Nairobi City and JKIA will only take 7-10mins.
True MGR as a standard is still widely used around the world,there is no problem for getting rolling stock...the same companies that manufacture for SGR also do MGR and other standards as well.
 

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There’s no problem with Meter gauge. They’re still rail companies churning out meter gauge trains.

It doesn’t make sense spending money to build a 5km SGR track. It’s not smart and literally locks out the rest of the commuter rail network.

We should go for a hybrid system like Japan. Where it’s high speed Shinkasen trains run on broad gauge which is used for longer high speed traveling. And a wide majority of its commuter rail system is completely narrow gauge and fully electric which is used for city commuters and direct airport link.
I'm perplexed Kenya hasn't forged cooperation with Indonesia regarding this matter. They operate and produce decent meter gauge trains (both EMU and DMU) as well as its infrastructure (rails, signalling, etc) at relatively affordable cost. The currently-used second-hand Spanish DMUs are pretty old and I suspect it would reach the end of its life in several years so it's just a stopgap measure. I think the Kenyan govt can also reach out to them to build, rehabilitate, and upgrade the commuter rail network too.

 

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Discussion Starter · #119 ·
I'm perplexed Kenya hasn't forged cooperation with Indonesia regarding this matter. They operate and produce decent meter gauge trains (both EMU and DMU) as well as its infrastructure (rails, signalling, etc) at relatively affordable cost. The currently-used second-hand Spanish DMUs are pretty old and I suspect it would reach the end of its life in several years so it's just a stopgap measure. I think the Kenyan govt can also reach out to them to build, rehabilitate, and upgrade the commuter rail network too.

Yes indeed. I have always had a keen interest in the Jakarta MGR network. A few years ago i noticed they bought Japan East Railways rolling stock and became intrigued and saw that it’s transportation is similar to Nairobi. Or faced challenges Nairobi is currently facing in transportation.
 

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Yes indeed. I have always had a keen interest in the Jakarta MGR network. A few years ago i noticed they bought Japan East Railways rolling stock and became intrigued and saw that it’s transportation is similar to Nairobi. Or faced challenges Nairobi is currently facing in transportation.
Apparently the second-hand Japanese rolling stock is also a temporary solution to the expansion of the commuter rail service because the capacity of the existing factory is full. Therefore, the commuter rail is served by both the Japanese and locally-made rolling stocks. However, a new, much bigger factory is still under construction and will roll its first batch next year after being delayed by the pandemic.

INKA Speeds Up the Construction of New Factory in Banyuwangi
INKA Kebut Penyelesaikan Pabrik di Banyuwangi - KlikJatim.com

PT INKA (Industri Kereta Api/Railway Industry Ltd.), the largest rolling stock manufacturer and the only DMU and EMU manufacturer from South East Asia, speeds up the first phase construction of its new factory on 84 hectares of land in Banyuwangi, East Java. The progress rate is 82% as of May 2020 and it will be finished by August 2020. This new factory is built in JV with Switzerland' Stadler to supply the international market and free up space in Madiun facilities to provide for domestic demand. Previously, INKA has exported rolling stocks to ASEAN countries, Australia, and Bangladesh, with future expansion to African markets.

 
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