…To Inject 800 New BRT Buses In Two Months, 5,000 In 24 Months
…Launches E-Ticketing, Intelligence Transport System
As part of measures to find a lasting solution to the perennial traffic gridlock along Ikorodu Road, Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode on Thursday commissioned multiple Layby and Slip Road in Agboyi Ketu Local Council Development Area of the State.
Governor Ambode, who also launched the Intelligence Transport System (ITS), the e-ticketing for commuters using the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT), the Ojota BRT Depot and the new complex for the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority known as LAMATA Place, said the initiatives were critical components of the ground plan to scale up the integrated transport management system.
Speaking while commissioning the slip road and multiple lay-by in Ketu, the Governor said the project was a significant milestone in drastically reducing the traffic along the corridor, adding that its completion would no doubt impact directly on travel time as the targeted reduction of traffic along the length of the Third Mainland Bridge to the entire stretch of the axis, moving towards Old Toll Gate and the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway would be accomplished.
“This project is one of the major interventions in recent time by this administration. There is the multiple lay-by at Oworonshoki, the car wash Layby, slip road at Olopomeji, the several see through fence and the recently launched lay-by at Alapere bus stop.
“Without doubt, this administration has dedicated considerable resources to the fulfillment of its initiatives of providing basic elements or roads and transport infrastructure. This obviously is in tandem with the fact that the importance of transportation tom our economy cannot be over emphasized,” he said.
The Governor said as part of the Bus Reform Initiative (BRI), additional new 800 buses would be provided in the next two months, while a total of 5,000 would be provided within 24 months.
He said another multiple lay-by and slip road with car park and market with big stores would be constructed in Ikosi Isheri, while 27,500 sanitation workers employed in line with the Cleaner Lagos Initiative designed to make all parts of the State clean, would commence work in the next three weeks.
He, however, urged residents to cooperate with government, especially by not plying commercial motorcycle, popularly known as Okada in restricted routes, saying such was why the government was providing enough buses.
Speaking at Ojota while launching the e-ticketing and ITS, Governor Ambode said the move was another initiative geared to allow proper transport planning, saying that the technology had been designed to indicate where each bus is; how the driver is behaving; the arrival time of a bus and space inside, among others.
Giving details, the Governor said: “When you look at the city generally, I get so unhappy when I see people standing in the bus stops not knowing when the next bus will arrive. The ITS is designed to solve such problem and our people can become more productive and then more comfortable in the way they commute across the city.
“We are starting this from the Ikorodu axis to CMS on the BRT lane and then we will scale it up as we get our new buses in few months away from here. In addition to that, the e-ticketing allows you to plan your little disposable income. So, if you are going to budget just N500 for transport in a week, the e-ticketing allows you rather than not being able to plan your transport movement.
“The truth is this, there are more Lagosians using buses; there are more Lagosians walking on the road than those of us that have cars and so we need to take proper care of them and that is the step we are taking here and the reforms we are doing in the transport sector ultimately to create an integrated transport management system in the city combining water, road, rail, air and those walking.”
Responding on behalf of the community, Oba of Ketu, HRM Isiaka Balogun commended Governor Ambode for the massive infrastructural projects effected in the axis so far, saying they were unprecedented.
He said it was also gratifying that the present administration was developing all parts of the State simultaneously, just as he made allusion to several projects such as the 141 and 181 inner roads, among others.