Nairobi Expressway set for re-design to accommodate CBD exits

Nairobi Expressway

One of the Nairobi Expressway toll stations.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

Nairobi residents will now have easy access to the Central Business District (CBD) as the government plans to re-design the expressway.

Infrastructure PS Paul Maringa told Members of Parliament that the expressway will be designed in a way that people from Westlands will now land at Nyayo House while those from the Airport will now land at Haile Selassie Avenue or Green park bus terminus.

The PS told the National Assembly Transport, Housing and public works committee that he will approve the new design this week with the works expected to end between three to six months.

“It is something that we are going to do immediately. Already I’m going to approve the new design then construction works will just start,” Prof Maringa told MPs.

The committee chairman David Pkosing said members of the public have been complaining about the current design which he pointed out does not make sense hence needs to be reviewed.

“The people of Kenya are asking questions in regards to this expressway. Why should a person who is from the Airport go all the way to the Capital Centre in Westlands, then come back to the CBD, it does not make sense at all,” Mr Pkosing said.

“As a committee we have received a lot of complaints from the public about it and the ministry should address this as a matter of urgency,” Mr Pkosing added.

He pointed out that failure to address the concerns will beat the logic of having the expressway which was to reduce congestion.

“As it is, it’s not an express but just another highway. So PS and the team, I believe the re-design can be done so that it is an expressway that we envisioned, “Mr Pkosing said.

At the same time, the PS told the committee that price of the cards that will be used by motorists to make payments while using the express will now be reduced from the current price of Sh2, 000 to Sh300.

“We want to make the cards affordable by all Kenyans and also encourage its usage on the expressway as opposed to cash payment,” Prof Maringa.

The PS said the cards will be made available in all leading supermarkets and petrol stations for easy accessibility by members of the public.

He said the cards will save time for the users as opposed to cash payment.

“It takes three seconds to use the card while it takes 45 seconds to use other modes of payment like credit card.It even takes longer while paying cash,” Prof Maringa said.

“We discourage using cash payment because some people carry less money and start arguing at the payment point while others waste time as they wait for change. This is why we are encouraging everyone to use cards,” Prof Maringa said.

Millions of Kenyans pay for a majority of services via mobile money service and the delay in including it in the payment options will limit motorists who wish to use the road without using cash or cards.

Prof Maringa said they will also be conducting public education together with the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) not only on the usage of the expressway but also on good habits while using the expressway.