Nairobi Expressway to get extra lanes at Museum Hill, JKIA to curb congestion

Nairobi Expressway

An aerial view of the Nairobi Expressway. 

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

The Kenya National Highways Authority (Kenha) and the Moja Expressway Company have announced plans to construct additional lanes on the Nairobi Expressway to accommodate growing traffic.

In a statement, on Wednesday, the two entities said the upgrades would include additional lanes at the Museum Hill exit and JKIA entrance and the construction of a new Haile Selassie toll station exit to facilitate a seamless flow of traffic into the CBD.

Kenha and Moja Expressway have invited public participation in the project.

Centric Africa Limited has been appointed to prepare the environmental and social impact assessment for the upgrade.

“Kenha plans to hold public consultations meeting in conformity to the provisions of the constitution of Kenya and Environment Management and Coordination Act (EMCA) Cap 387,” the entities said.

The news will come as a relief to Nairobi residents who will now have easier access to the city centre.

Last year, then Infrastructure Principal Secretary Paul Maringa told Members of Parliament that the expressway would be redesigned to allow motorists from Westlands to exit at Nyayo House while those from the airport would exit at the Haile Selassie Avenue roundabout or the Green Park bus terminus.

Completed within six months

The new design was to be completed within six months.

In March this year, Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja approved the construction of an exit for the Nairobi Expressway into the CBD at Uhuru Park.

He also promised that the county government would address the traffic congestion that is usually experienced at the Westlands roundabout during rush hours.

Mr Sakaja made the announcement after meeting with transport stakeholders including commuters, traders and matatu operators.

"We shall sort out the current disorganisation at the Westlands roundabout shortly. We have also approved the construction of an exit for the expressway into the CBD at Green/Uhuru Park,” said Sakaja.

Last month, Roads and Infrastructure Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen was taken to task to explain how the Nairobi Expressway has eased traffic congestion in the city centre.

Mwingi Central MP Gideon Mulyungi wanted the government to further provide the House with a status report on the use of the Nairobi Expressway since it was commissioned.

He also wanted Mr Murkomen to state when the Ministry intends to improve the old Mombasa Road.

50,000 vehicles daily

The Chinese-built Nairobi Expressway stretches from the western side of the city to the southeastern edge of the metropolis and reportedly records an average daily traffic volume of 50,000 vehicles.

The Sh87 billion, 27.1-kilometre road was financed and built by the China Road and Bridge Corporation under a public-private partnership model.

In February, Moja Expressway CEO Steve Zhao said at least 10 million vehicles had used the road since it was opened in July 2022.

“As of February 7, 2023, the total number of vehicles that have used the Nairobi Expressway stands at 10 million,” Zhao said.

The Nairobi Expressway has 10 interchanges and includes the SGR terminus at JKIA, Eastern Bypass, Southern Bypass, and Enterprise Road.

It was launched by retired President Uhuru Kenyatta in 2022, to reduce traffic congestion on Mombasa Road and improve mobility in the city.