All of the urban centers and industrial zones within the county are accessible by road. This guarantees easy inter-county connectivity to facilitate trade with access to local and international markets. In 2012, 1.8% of the roads in Machakos County were tarmacked and paved. The County Government has since prioritized road infrastructure projects by setting aside KES.1.6 Billion (about 18.8 million dollars) in the 2013/2014 county budget for roads construction and maintenance to ensure accessibility to all to county facilities such as hospitals, schools, food basket areas, quarries and mines.
In 2014, the county government opened the tarmacked 33km Makutano-Kithimani road a KES.650 million (about 7.6 million dollars) project. The county government's plan is that by 2017, all major linkage roads will be tarmacked and all other roads will be of dust-free murram surfaces.
In November Kenya commissioned the first Standard gauge railway that will run from Mombasa to Kampala. The Sh1.2 trillion shilling (about 14 Billion Dollars) Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) project will herald a major economic transformation arising from an expected slashing of commodity prices. The new SGR line, which is a Vision 2030 Flagship project to be implemented by the Kenya Railways Corporation, will typically present an opportunity for the railways operator to run freight trains with 54 double stack flat wagons carrying 216 TEUs per trip.
As a county, Machakos has also positioned itself strategically around the project by zoning strategic land along the railway to attract unique investors such as those in mining and keen to transport using the railway line. This is in anticipation of improved railway operation systems.
The upcoming New Machakos City has a well laid out plan to establish a high speed railway line interconnecting with the capital city Nairobi. This will improve access of Machakos and the upcoming Konza technocity.
Machakos is only 64km from Nairobi and 50km from JKIA (Jomo Kenyatta International Airport) by road transport. The county government has plans to provide funds to construct airstrips/airports in strategic locations including a 4 km long runway at Konza technocity.
ICT and Connectivity
Residents and investors within the county have access to high-speed Internet. Major town centers such as Mavoko, Machakos, Kangundo-Tala, Kathiani and Masee have easy access to high-speed 3G (upto 21Mbps) connectivity whereas rural areas can get high-speed Internet connectivity using satellite link service providers. The county government is working towards establishing free Wi-Fi and Internet kiosks to promote access to online services by citizens, businesses and investors.
The county government is also facilitating connectivity programmes to have the National Fiber Internet Cable network to reach Schools, Public Offices, and Police stations to ensure access to online services.
Energy is a major infrastructural enabler of the other pillars. At national level, wood fuel and other biomass account for 68% of the total primary energy consumption, followed by petroleum at 22% and electricity at 9%. Electricity remains the most popular and its access to the rural areas is estimated at 4 %.
A study carried out alongside the national census in 2009 found that only 17% of households in Machakos County have access to electricity. Ranked 11th ahead of Muranga, Kakamega and Narok counties, the county will, over the next 5 years, prioritize rural electrification programmes as well as promote investment in the energy sector to increase the number of households accessing electricity in the County from 17% to 50%.
Access to Land
Machakos County has a total surface area of 6,208 square Kilometers and is ranked the 22nd largest county in terms of surface area ahead of Nairobi, Mombasa, Nyeri and Kisumu Counties. Property in Machakos County can be acquired on freehold or leasehold basis where a freehold title gives the owner absolute proprietorship over the land in perpetuity. A Leasehold property is held on a government lease for a specified period, usually 50 or 99 years. At the end of this period, the landowner applies for an extension of the lease, which is usually granted. The extension process takes approximately 6 months. In the Machakos City master plan, the county has put in place land incentives that investors can capitalize on so as to maximize on their investment. The county is already providing land for investment through concession, tax breaks and waivers to ready investors so that they can expand and provide jobs.
The County government is also implementing Farm Subsidy systems as practiced in Australia, Japan and Canada to increase cultivated land in Machakos County from about 20% to 60% over the next 5 years.
With tourism accounting for close to 10% of Kenya are GDP, Machakos County offers an authentic cultural experience with its natural attraction sites and recreation centers. Machakos County’s has a hilly terrain providesa beautiful scenery that is perfect for tourism-related activities such as camping, hiking safaris, and ecotourism. The is endowed with natural attraction sites and recreation centres such as the Fourteen falls, OlDonyoSabuk National Park, The Magnetic hill anti-gravity site, the Masinga dam, Iveti Forest reserve, the Komarok shrine, Machakos People’s park, the 5,000-seater open amphitheatre and the Lukenya hills.
Machakos is also a centre for cultural tourism, dance and musical festivals. The CAR Africa women’s Sevens Cup in April, The Bamburi Rugby Super Series, The Tusker Premier League, The Masaku 7s Rugby Tournament and The East and Central Africa Senior Challenge tournament are some of the sporting activities happening in the county.