Kenya Railways is in the process of rehabitating the Thika – Nanyuki branch line, which is part of the Meter Gauge Railway (MGR). The route length is about 177.2km. The Branch line was constructed in three phases namely; Nairobi to Thika, completed in 1913, Thika to NaroMoru, completed in 1927; and Naromoru to Nanyuki, completed in 1931.
The Thika – Nanyuki MGR branch line was developed for both Freight and Passenger services. From Nairobi Central Railway Station, the branch line traverses six (6) counties, namely; Nairobi County, Kiambu County, Murang’a County, Kirinyaga County, Nyeri County, and Laikipia County. It has stations at; Nairobi, Makadara, Dandora, Kahawa, Ruiru, Kalimoni, Thika. Mitubiri, Makuyu, Maragua, Murang’a, Sagana, Karatina, Kiganjo, Naromoru and Nanyuki.
The revival of this Branch line is set to avail immense benefits which will spur economic growth to the Counties within the region. It will provide a faster, reliable and safe transport means for high capacity haulage of freight; have significant positive impact on the environment due to reduction in carbon emissions; reduce wear and tear of the road; as well as provide effective utilization and security of railway assets.
The railway line will in addition to serving other fuel stations/depot, it will also serve the high capacity Vivo Energy storage depot in Nanyuki, which in turn will serve the North Eastern markets. It will also support the establishment of Special Economic Zones (SEZ) by each of the Counties traversed by the line, through ease of movement of goods, services and publics.