By Florence Onuegbu
Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has appealed to motorists plying the Third Mainland Bridge to be patient as the bridge closes partially for repairs.
Sanwo-Olu made the appeal on Saturday while on an inspection of the bridge and alternative routes rehabilitated by the state government.
The governor also toured various highways where junctions and roundabouts had been redesigned to diffuse traffic, including Allen Junction, Maryland Junction and Lekki’s first and second roundabouts, among others.
He said that the repair of the bridge was long overdue and could no longer be postponed as it would portend danger to the safety of residents.
According to him, motorists should be patient and cooperate with traffic management personnel deployed on the routes.
He assured that the state government would ensure speedy work on the bridge, as the contractor would commence work in earnest by Monday, July 27.
Sanwo-Olu urged commuters to explore other means of transportation as faster alternative.
He said the state government had strengthened the capacity of the ferry services and currently building six additional jetties across the state.
“I am here to supervise the repair activities and to monitor the effect of the closure of the bridge on the vehicular movement to enable us focus on where improvement could be made.
“However, what we need to communicate to the road users is patience. Our traffic management officers are on ground to make their journey hitch-free.
“The contractor handling the repair work will be fully on site by Monday. In the next three months, repair work would have been completed on the first lane, while they will move to the other lane.
“While we urge road users for patience, we also advise them to look at the option of waterways transportation in commuting to and from the Island.
“We have just opened the Ilaje Jetty for public use and we are delivering additional six jetties across the state to ease movement,” Sanwo-Olu said.
The governor said that some of government’s long-term solution was how to get people to move on waterways and on the rails.
According to him, life will be a lot better by the time the state finishes its rail projects.
“Ninety to 100 per cent of our people use the roads. Go to anywhere in the world, you cannot see only one means of transportation.
“You need to use other means of transportation and that is our medium cum long-term plan to be able to solve all the traffic issues,” he said.
While inspecting the newly designed Allen Junction on Obafemi Awolowo Way, the governor said he was satisfied with the project, expressing optimism that the new layout would relieve the highway of gridlock.
Sanwo-Olu disclosed that the state government, by August, would roll out 600 buses to ply various routes, including Ikorodu, Abule Egba-Oshodi and Ikeja.
“We are rolling out 600 buses in high and medium capacity. The buses will be deployed next month and they will be seen across busy roads.
“The medium capacity buses will be plying Obafemi Awolowo Way. Oshodi inward Abule Egba will be priority. We will also be increasing bus capacity from Ikorodu to Tafawa Balewa Square,” he said.
The governor said that the slow pace of work on some ongoing capital projects, including the Pen Cinema Bridge in Agege, was as a result of disruption by coronavirus pandemic.
He said that the Pen Cinema Bridge would now be delivered in October.
Sanwo-Olu also inspected drainage at Eric Moore Road, Eko Bridge and Lekki-Epe Expressway.
The governor was accompanied on the tour by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Gbenga Omotoso, his Transportation counterpart, Dr Frederic Oladehinde, Special Adviser on Works and Infrastructure, Mrs Aramide Adeyoye, and Special Adviser on Transport, Mr Toyin Fayinka. (NAN)