• Sunday, March 03, 2024
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Lagos procures additional rolling stock for Blue, Red Lines rail from China

Hardship: Sanwo-Olu appeals to Lagos residents to stay calm

The Lagos State government has procured additional rolling stocks for the Blue and Red lines rail systems, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu confirmed on Thursday.

The acquisition, according to Sanwo-Olu, is to bring more relief to millions of Lagos residents. The additional rolling stocks are expected to arrive in the state before the end of the year.

Read also: Sanwo-Olu announces increase in train trips on Lagos Blue Line

While the first phase (Marina to Mile 2) of the total 27km Blue Line rail on the Lagos-Badagry corridor had been completed and currently lifting passengers, the 37km Red Line is projected to start commercial operations this first quarter of 2024. It will run from Agbado to Marina with 13 stations at Agbado, Iju, Agege, Ikeja, MMIA International, (domestic), Oshodi, Mushin, Yaba, Ebute Metta, Iddo, Ebute Ero, and Marina.

Speaking during a high-level meeting of Lagos State government officials with the president and management of the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) at its headquarters in Beijing, China, on Thursday, Sanwo-Olu reiterated his administration’s commitment to completing the second phase of the Blue Line rail project and flag off of the commercial operations of the Red Line rail project.

“We have made requests for additional rolling stocks for Red Line and Blue Line. That conversation is ongoing. We have started making payments and hope that because of our commitment, we will get those rolling stocks before the end of the year. It would improve the journey experience of our people. It would improve citizens’ appreciation of what the government is doing to reduce transportation pressure in a big city like Lagos.

“With the new rolling stocks, we will have a more predictable journey time; the commuters and passengers would be more committed and we will see an improvement in the quality of lives and reduction of traffic gridlocks in the city,” the governor said.

Governor Sanwo-Olu, who was accompanied to the meeting by some officials of his government,
informed the CCECC team, that his administration had promised Lagosians to solve the traffic and transportation challenges they currently faced, hence the need for the red line to take off without further delay.

He expressed satisfaction with the pace of progress of the Red Line project and hinted at inaugurating it for commercial operations as soon as the presidency communicated the availability of President Bola Tinubu, who had agreed in principle to commission the project.

“We are happy that during our tenure, we were able to complete phase one of the Blue Line and not just completing, we started its operation and now we are seeing an increase in the passenger traffic every month. We have also increased the number of trips.

“People expect a lot more from us and that is why we are committed to the phase two of the project. The work has started and we are trying to make money available for you (CCECC) to continue to push. I have said to people that within our second term, we should complete phase two of the Blue Line.

“For the Red Line, which is even more exciting for us because we started the construction during our administration; we are happy that the phase one of it is practically completed and I am happy to invite you when Mr. President Bola Tinubu, would be commissioning the Red Line. We are still hoping to commission it within this February.

“We believe the Red Line will carry more passengers than the Blue Line. The Red Line is longer and it has a lot of other infrastructure. All the bridge components that we are committed to have been completed and commissioned, with the exception of the one in Mushin.

“I want you to encourage the Federal Government to also complete their bridge components of the Red Line so that we can have a rail system that would not have any incident of traffic or interaction with vehicles or passengers and we can wall off and ensure it is a very safe rail corridor. There are a lot of interactions on the Red Line, so we need to ensure that we operate a rail corridor that is very safe for passengers, citizens and vehicular movement.

“We are also advancing conversation on the right of way at the corridor for phase two of the Red Line, which will take it based on what we are seeing to the connection of the Blue Line. That makes it a lot more functional because what it means is that passengers can hop in and hop out between the Red Line and Blue Line when phase two is completed.”