Lagos State government has unveiled plans to transform the Iganmu and Ijora axis of the metropolis with the construction of 1,008 housing units within the area, expected to commence this year.
Governor Babatunde Fashola made the disclosure recently during a tour of ongoing projects across the state. He reiterated his resolve to effectively tackle housing problems in the state. according to him, this informs the plan to build the biggest housing estate yet in the state in the Iganmu area, where residents will be able to enjoy the state's light rail transportation system which is expected to take off by the second half of this year.
"People should be able to live close to the train station and walk about a kilometre to their homes. So it is a dream, it is beginning to come together. This is what we saw and we will deliver it," he said.
Fashola faulted criticisms from some quarters that the state government is fixated on demolition of structures, especially media reports of plans by his administration to demolish 50 distressed buildings in Jakande Estate, Isolo, in the wake of the recent case of building collapse in the area.
"All the sensationalism about demolition is not consistent with what we are doing. We are building over 400 housing units here in Igando, we are building another 400 plus in Ogba, about 500 in Sangotedo and over 600 in Agbowa.
"We are starting Ajara in Badagry. I also told you about what we are going to do in Ijora from this year with about 1008 housing units. That is not consistent with a government that is demolishing. We are builders and not demolishers. We are focused; we know where the target is," the governor stated.
He explained that demolition of distressed building by the government is mostly necessitated by the need to forestall avoidable loss of lives, assuring that government does not pull down structures for selfish reasons. He declared that for any structure demolished by government, there are plans of replacing it with even better and stronger ones, adding howevr that due process must be followed before any structure is pulled down.
The governor blamed the perceived slow pace of work on some of the ongoing projects on a variety of challenges. These challenges, he noted, include paucity of fund, court litigations by some property owners and payment of compensation to some of the residents whose properties were affected in the course of executing the projects.
Project sites inspected by the governor include Lite Rail Stations at Iganmu, Alaba and Mile 2. He also visited the construction sites of Central library of the Lagos State University (LASU); Maternal and Child Care Centre in FESTAC; Okota-Ago Palace Road; Ejigbo-Ajao Link Bridge, Network of roads around Jimoh Ajao Street and Igando HOMS project site.
Other construction sites inspected by the governor are that of Resettlement Relief Camp, Igando, projects at Alimosho General Hospital (School of Nursing and Hostel among others) and Samuel Jinadu Street in Orile Agege, among others.