22 April 2007

Nigeria: Lamata Assures On Bus Rapid Transit Project

Lagos — Lagos State Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA) has assured Lagosians that the first phase of the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project in Lagos will be delivered before end of May, this year.

Managing Director of the authority, Dr Dayo Mobereola, gave the assurance in Lagos, during a consultative meeting with transport union officials on the BRT project being implemented along the Mile 12/CMS corridor.

The implementation of the project followed more than three years of surveys carried out to determine the transport needs of the people of the state, according to a statement from LAMATA, made available in Lagos.

Mobereola explained that the Mile 12/CMS project was one of the many corridors on which LAMATA had conducted surveys, adding that the authority was also planning for the Iyana-Ipaja/Igando/Ikotun corridor.

"The authority is also exploring BRT schemes for Orile-Okokomaiko, Iyana-Ipaja to Maryland through the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway and the Mobolaji Bank-Anthony Way," he said.

He said the mandate of LAMATA was to implement an integrated transport system which would explore how the bus system could connect the rail and water systems.

"We are looking at a situation where people will rely on more than one mode of transportation to go wherever they wish to go."

Mobereola allayed the fears of union officials on the project's sustainability and continuity, noting that it was apparent from the campaigns of governorship candidates in the state that transportation occupied a prime place in their manifestoes.

He said everybody was now more conscious that Lagos was the only mega city in the world that did not have an integrated transport system.

The LAMATA boss said most cities in the world with more than one million commuters were looking toward a BRT system.

He assured the unions that the BRT project would only complement their operations as the authority was not out to send them out of business.

In his presentation, LAMATA's Technical Advisor, Public Transport and Traffic Management, Mr Gbenga Dairo, said the project was to restore the dignity of commuters in Lagos while moving from

one point to the other.

Dairo said some structural changes would be effected on a part of the corridor but assured the transport unions that the people would be enlightened on what was been done at the

appropriate time.

The Kosofe branch Chairman of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), Mr Ajilo Odugunle, assured LAMATA of the union's support.

He urged the authority to put adequate traffic control measures in place during the construction phase.

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