FG to fully reopen Third Mainland Bridge weekend

Although neither the hour nor day of the weekend is revealed, the federal government has said that the Third Mainland Bridge in Lagos undergoing major repairs will be reopened “this weekend”.

Babatunde Fashola, Minister of Works and Housing, who gave this hint on Thursday during a phone-in radio programme in Abuja, assured that the 11.8km bridge which had been partially closed to traffic in the last seven months would “definitely” be reopened.

This is pretty good news for Lagos motorists and other road users who in the last seven months had had to contend with unprecedented gridlock on the bridge, increased transport fare, prolonged journey hours, and harrowing driving experience. All that is expected to end by this weekend.

“I can tell you now that this weekend, it will be opened definitely; my directors are still in Lagos; the major works have now been finished, so let me say that again by way of information,” the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) quoted Fashola as saying.

“Definitely this weekend it will be reopened. I will announce the date toward Friday and the reason I am holding back the exact date is that we are the government; any time we say something, people must reliably be able to plan their lives around what we say,’’ he said.

A total shutdown of the bridge is to happen by midnight of Friday (today), but Fashola said that would be the last before the total reopening, disclosing that lane markings and finishing touches would be done within the next 48 to 72 hours.

The minister commended Lagos residents for their patience and understanding, assuring that the repairs had been completed and the contractor would soon pull out of site.

“The major works have now been finished, the piles, all the joints, all the bearings, everything is done. The last miles now are the works which were not in the contract but we insisted must be done; we are asphalting some of the places on the pavement that have been affected by erosion; some of the lane markings have worn away so we want to do that,’’ he said.

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