, NAIROBI, Kenya, April 6 – There was confusion by motorists at the Waiyaki Way, Bunyala and Lusaka roundabouts on Monday afternoon after they were not able to make right turnings as the new traffic measures launched to reduce congestion took effect.
In the initiative spearheaded by the Nairobi county Government, motorists going into Westlands from town will have to proceed on to Brookside drive where they will make a U turn before accessing Westlands and the same will apply for both the Bunyala and Lusaka roundabouts.
Nairobi County Executive Committee member in charge of Transport Abdullahi Mohamed says the aim of the initiative will ensure that there is a smooth flow of traffic in two opposite directions.
“We are closing the right turning movement on these roundabouts. Bunyala roundabout processes for your information about 6,700 vehicles per hour in the evening. That is a very huge volume of cars that are being processed and we realize over 75 percent of the vehicles being processed are through traffic, that is basically those people who pass through this roundabout are going to town or going towards Mombasa Road,” he stated.
He further revealed that the initiative seeking to demolish roundabouts and replace them with signalized junctions is currently underway and companies having works within the roundabouts have been given until the 15th of this month to clear up for the construction work to begin.
“We have decided to enable movement for the greatest number of people who are being processed on this road by closing the right turning movement by ensuring that we do not create a conflict for the vehicles that would otherwise want to get on with their journey across. We have tried to channelize movement here so that anyone coming from Lang’ata Road or the highway and wanting to go back has two options,” he said.
The program seeks to remove six roundabouts from Kangemi all the way to Mombasa Road to eliminate obstruction which cause traffic jams.
The Nairobi County Government had partnered with the Central Government in the Sh400 million-initiative aimed at decongesting the Kenyan capital.
“On any given day, you can only process traffic from one given direction. We want to now upgrade this into a signalised junction so that at any given time, you have something that enables you to have simultaneous movement. If you are coming down from Serena and want to go towards Mombasa road, we are telling you that you can be able to do that while at the same time processing traffic that is leaving Kenyatta Avenue going to Waiyaki Way,” Mohammed stated.
“If you are going into Westlands, we are giving you options to get there. There is a u-turn at Brookside and then I think there are two junctions before you get to the roundabout. There is a bus terminus at the Westlands roundabout. There is a lot of obstruction that goes on there and we will limit the time a PSV uses to pick up and drop passengers,” he said.
He explained that the same will apply for the Bunyala roundabout where there will be no right turn for motorists.
“When you come further down into Bunyala roundabout, we want to kill the right handed movement so that as much as possible we have traffic moving in two opposite directions. What we are saying is that we will ensure that anyone coming from Upper Hill is taking a left turn and going all the way up to Haile Selassie,” he said.
Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero had stated that the initiative which also includes banning of licensing any new Public Service Vehicles and the banning of handcarts and trolleys from city roads will go a long way in reducing congestion and at the same time improve the country’s economy.