Traffic flow rate on Kigali roads: a case of national roads (RN1 and RN3)

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Jacqueline Nyirajana
Akinwale Oladotun Coker
Folake Olubunmi Akintayo


congestion, density,free-flow, peak hour, traffic regimes


Traffic flow study plays a key important in various functionalities of cities all over the world. The study of traffic flow is also viewed as an essential facility of the country when it wants to establish traffic operations patterns in the progress of road planning. Blockages are accountable for a sequence of harmful effects such as loss of time, scheduling difficulties, carbon dioxide production, and risks of accidents as well as external expenses. Besides, inadequate transportation facilities and increased traffic volume hamper urban development, especially in developing nations. The objective of the study was to assess the traffic flow state in two selected national roads of Kigali city. The traffic data were collected from 5 am to 8 pm on two National Roads (RN1 and RN3).  The relationship between density and flow rate was analyzed using the fundamental diagram of traffic flow. It was found that the peak hours were from 6 am to 8 am and 5 pm to 8 pm. The highest number of vehicles counted were motorcycles due to shortcuts taken to reduce travel time. The results on RN3 revealed a proportion increase of traffic flow and density in the free-flow regime from 0 to maximum flow of 3346.6 veh/h correspondent to a critical density of 114.9 veh/km. However, in the congested zone regime, there was a decrease in traffic flow and an increase in density. It was found that the curve of flow versus density tended to increase on-road RN1. This study proposed the promotion of public transport and e-commerce as strategies to mitigate the congestion. Also, further research may be carried out on all roads of Kigali city, to provide the level of congestion useful for traffic deviation accordingly.