• Urban planner Constant Cap on Friday told the National Environment Tribunal that the expressway will, in fact, make matters worse.
• Uhuru said the project is intended to ease traffic along Mombasa Road to save commuters time.
The Sh62 billion Nairobi Expressway under construction will not decongest the city, an expert has said.
Instead, it will create a demand for personal vehicles.
Urban planner Constant Cap on Friday told the National Environment Tribunal that the expressway will, in fact, make matters worse.
"The expressway will limit the implementation of mass rapid transit. The project will affect land use planning and will have a ripple effect on other corridors in the city," Cap, an urban planner, told the tribunal.
Motorists with vehicles of less than four axles will be charged Sh300 to use the expressway or a pro-rata charge of Sh11.25 per kilometre for those exiting along the way.
Vehicles under this category include all types that have between four to eight wheels.
China Road and Bridge Corporation is the contractor for the elevated road that will run from Mlolongo to the junction of James Gichuru Road and Waiyaki Way in Westlands through the city centre.
The dual carriageway will have 10 interchanges, including the SGR terminus at JKIA, Eastern Bypass, Southern Bypass and Enterprise Road.
Cap was being cross-examined by lawyer Mark Odaga.
Green Belt movement Wangari Maathai Foundation and other conservation and rights organisations are challenging the implementation of the project on the grounds that it will have irreparable damage on some green spaces.
Green Belt says despite assurances, the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment Study Report still avers that there will be significant impacts on Uhuru Park and other ecologically sensitive areas around the Chiromo, Nyayo Stadium, and Railways Golf Club interchanges.
"My recommendation is that we should stick to city urban development plan on the mass rapid transit system," Cap said.
Cap told the tribunal headed by Mohamed Balala that the implementation of the project was shrouded in secrecy.
In March last year, World Resources Institute vice president and regional director for Africa Wanjira Mathai said there has been no disclosure of critical documents pertaining to the massive project and its impact on Uhuru Park.
World Resources is a global research organisation working on six goals the world must achieve to secure a sustainable future: climate, energy, food, forests, water, cities and transport.
President Uhuru Kenyatta launched the construction of the 27km expressway on Mombasa Road on October 16, 2019.
Uhuru said the project is intended to ease traffic along Mombasa Road to save commuters time.
Wanjira, who is also chair of the Wangari Maathai Foundation, said the expressway is not necessary.
She said one thing she is learning about urban mobility is that there is no need to build such roads as "it is not always the best solution".
Wanjira said decongesting the city is not about more highways.
"Decongesting the city could be about better management of the flow of traffic; it could be a better option for people to ride a bus. We need bus rapid transit, non-motorised transit, bicycle lanes, walking paths. Some of those are much more efficient in helping to decongest and especially manage traffic," she said.
The Green Belt Movement has been demanding that the government must produce structural designs for the expressway.
Cap told the tribunal that he had raised concerns about the need for the design of the project to be shared.
"Nothing has been provided. No information has been shared with the public," he said. Cap said there has been no access to the detailed design of the project.
Tribunal chairman Mohamed Balala said the matter will come before the tribunal on February 25 and March 4.
Construction of the Nairobi Expressway from JKIA to Rironi is progressing along Mombasa road as earth-moving construction equipment are seen digging some ...