The highway was opened to traffic in Nov 1965 to link the harbour city of Tema to Accra. It was built under the administration of Kwame Nkrumah, the first president of Ghana. Its construction was fashioned after the Autobahn in Germany and was purposed to be the first in motorway systems that would link major towns and cities in Ghana.
A major problem that existed on the motorway was that of poor illumination. The motorway had no street lights when it was completed in 1964. In June 2002, the Ghana News Agency reported that the Government of Ghana was to spend 1.95 million cedis to light up the motorway. The project was to commemorate the country's Golden Jubilee in 2007. The project had challenges that delayed its completion of the Accra–Tema Motorway. It was suspended due to cable thefts. The problem led to plain-clothed policemen patrolling the motorway. Unfortunately, not all of the mounted street lights on the motorway are functional.
In 2009, Adom FM, an Accra-based private radio station embarked on a campaign to educate users of the motorway on dangers that faced commuters on the multi-purpose highway. The education included the rampant criminal activities on the motorway, the unsafe bridges, the potholes, stolen side-rails, malfunctioning street lights, lack of reflectors, broken-down vehicles, and road safety.
Rehabilitation of the motorway
In August, 2009, rehabilitation work began on the road and was to cost 500,000 cedis. Part of the motorway was to be reconstructed using epoxy cement. The rehabilitation work took eight weeks and involved the removal and replacement of the concrete slabs which had developed potholes and the repair of the asphalt surface on shoulders of the road.
- "Police now patrol Tema Motorway". www.modernghana.com. Retrieved 5 June 2011.
- "Accra - Tema MOTORWAY". www.ghana-net.com. Retrieved 4 June 2011.
- "ADOM FM launches "Save the Accra-Tema Motorway" campaign". www.modernghana.com. Retrieved 5 June 2011.
- "Accra-Tema motorway to be rehabilitated". www.modernghana.com. Retrieved 5 June 2011.