By Seyi IJIBAYIWA
…To construct Badore, Regional Roads in Lekki
…Approves rehabilitation of Abule Egba Inner Roads, Building of Shopping Mall
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode on Wednesday commissioned the Ajah and Abule Egba Flyovers, saying that both bridges were creative solutions by his administration to address the perennial traffic associated with the areas, as well as boost economic activities in both axes.
The Governor, who spoke at separate events in Ajah and Abule Egba to official open the Bridges, christened as ‘Jubilee Bridges’ for public use, said that while the driving motive behind Ajah Bridge was to improve connectivity in the axis and facilitate economic growth, the Abule-Egba Bridge was about opening up other areas of the State and improving the lives of residents in the area.
Speaking at Ajah, the Governor recalled that the area was troubled with terrible traffic gridlock on a daily basis, which according to him was crippling business activities, causing loss of valuable man hours and revenues.
He said the Bridge would eliminate the traffic jam usually experienced on the road while the Freedom and Admiralty roads, which he also commissioned, would provide an alternative route to the Lekki/Ikoyi Bridge, thereby, easing traffic at Lekki Phase 1.
“We had to give this project priority because of its strategic importance to the economic growth of the Lekki Free Trade Zone and the Ibeju-Lekki-Epe axis. This axis will play a key role in the future prosperity of Lagos State as the home to many multi-billion naira private investments in the Lekki Free Trade Zone as well as the upcoming seaport and airport.
“As a government, we are irrevocably committed to making Lagos State an investment haven and we have made it a duty to put in place top class infrastructure that will facilitate movement of people, goods and materials. We are confident that these initiatives will boost commercial activities in this axis, support economic growth and significantly reduce travel time as well as other costs associated with traffic challenges,” the Governor said.
Besides, Governor Ambode said that beyond the Bridge, his administration was already looking to activate the Badore jetty in line with efforts to commence reforms in the State’s water transportation efforts.
He said this intervention would see the creation of a bus route from Badore to Langbasa and Ajah axis, rehabilitation of the Badore Road and also create alternative routes through Oke-Ira to the Epe expressway, while the alternative slip road which motorists used while the construction of the Bridge lasted would be closed to accommodate a new Bus Terminal.
At the commissioning of Freedom Road and Admiralty Way in Lekki, Governor Ambode said in continuation of efforts to open the axis for economic activities, the State Government in partnership with the private sector would commence construction of 8km Regional Road to serve as alternative route to connect Victoria Garden City (VGC) from Freedom Road.
Governor Ambode, who also spoke at the commissioning of Abule Egba Bridge, said the project was a result of the Government’s engagements with the people of the axis and his administration’s strong desire to make life easier and better for the people.
He said the area was a strategic route for commercial and social activities which was riddled by heavy traffic gridlock, hence his administration’s decision to redesign the traffic flow chart of the axis to ensure better connectivity between Lagos and Ogun States.
“Today, we all have cause to rejoice as the Jubilee Bridge, Abule-Egba is delivered. This bridge is one of the interventions we embarked upon to ensure free flow of traffic, stimulate commercial activities and create opportunities for our people.
“Lagos means business and today, Abule-Egba is open for business. This bridge signposts the beginning of a new era of development that would enhance the standard of living of the people in this axis with the provision of this infrastructure,” Governor Ambode said.
The Governor said the construction of the Bridge was the beginning of a process to transform the axis to the new economic hub of the State, assuring that the ongoing Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) lane from Oshodi to Abule Egba would be followed by another BRT lane from Abule Egba to Ogun State border.
Already, the Governor said all the adjoining roads disrupted in the course of the construction of the Bridge have been awarded for rehabilitation, while a shopping mall would also be constructed opposite the Oke-Odo Market to further boost economic activities in the axis.
Earlier, in his opening remarks at both events, the State’s Commissioner for Waterfront Infrastructure Development, Engr. Adebowale Akinsanya, said that while the Ajah Bridge is a 160metres long dual carriageway with total length of 620metres, the Abule Egba Bridge is 1.3km with a water fountain. Both bridges were designed with traffic signalization, street lighting, walkways, service ducts, drainage infrastructure, among others. Freedom Road is 2.7km, while Admiralty Way is 2.2km.