Kerala has eight National Highways which run for about 1457 km. Kerala has narrower National Highways compared to other parts of India. Kerala is the only state, other than Goa, which has requested for narrower highways in the state. NHAI upgrades highways to a minimum 4-lane, 60-meter-wide, grade-separated highway or a better standard across India. But in Kerala, National Highways are being upgraded to 45-meter-wide highways. Now Kerala State Government has requested NHAI to reduce the width of National highways in state to 30-meters, although neighbouring Karnataka and Tamil Nadu are upgrading their National Highways as 60-meters or more wider highways, with futuristic provision for 6/8-lane highway. NHAI has stopped working on many of the highway widening/upgrade projects as there are protest against it in the state.
The Palakkad—Thrissur—Kochi stretch of NH 544 is a part of North-South and East-West Corridor of the Indian highway system.There was a proposal for construction of standalone ring road/bypasses around Tiruvananthapuram City under NHDP Phase VII. Due to the present land acquisition crisis, NHAI stopped the feasibility study into the oncoming project under NHDP–Phase-III scheme in the stretch of NH 66.
There are 77 state highways in Kerala. Of them, MC Road (Main-Central Road), proposed Hill Highway (Kerala) and Main Eastern Highway are the largest. The respective State Highway number is displayed on the top of all milestones (black in colour in green background) on the respective road. The Kerala State Transport Project, costing 336 million US dollars (Rs 1612 crores) - of which World Bank financing is US $ 255 million (Rs 1224 crores) and State's contribution is US $ 79.00 million(Rs 388 crores), aims to improve traffic flow and road safety on Kerala State's primary road network, and to strengthen the institutional and financial capacity of Kerala's key transport sector agencies.