New Nairobi Expressway exit open at Uhuru Park for easy access to CBD

Transport CS Kipchumba Murkomen speaks during the launch of the newly completed Nairobi Expressway Haile Selassie exit plaza. [Collins Oduor, Standard]

The completion of the Haile Selassie Expressway exit Plaza is expected to ease traffic flow and allow motorists to easily enter the city centre.

Since the Expressway was launched in 2021, motorists accessing the city centre have been driving to the Museum exit, and using other options including University Way, Uhuru Highway, or Kipande Road to access the city centre.

Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen said many people have complained that the value of the Expressway was being underutilized since the exit was far from the heart of government offices.

“When I came to office in October 2022, during the vetting process, MPs were very categorical that for maximum use of the Expressway, we needed to complete the originally designed exit towards the Central Business District,” Murkomen explained.

He spoke on Saturday during the launch of the new exit expected to also benefit legislators, the Office of the President and Deputy President along Harambee Avenue, and other officials at the Supreme Court of Kenya.

The new exit was constructed for five months with a new exit plaza at Greenpark with a total of five toll lanes.

“This is an example of a successful Private Partnership Project where the government does not take responsibility for the traffic volume,” said Murkomen.

Adding: “Many other PPPs have failed in the past because the investor is insisting that the government collects the toll and meet the difference just in case they are unable to receive that amount of money they need monthly."

The Transport CS explained that the uniqueness of the investment is that the traffic volume risk is not borne by the government but by the investor.

“Many Kenyans have been asking why the Ministry is involved in private investment but our responsibility is to ensure that we give under the agreement to the investor guarantee that we are going to protect them from political demonstrations,” he said.

“That is why during the anti-government protests last year when the section of the road was damaged, we came out strongly because it is a risk to the government and the people of Kenya.”

On the recent increase in charges for motorists using the Expressway, Murkomen explained that it is one way that the State is supporting the investor.

“It is our responsibility that the amount that is going to be charged is not done in secret, the investor must convince the State that they have gone through the tabulation and then that information is relayed publicly to Kenyans,” he added.