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FG Creating Compelling Alternatives to Road Transport

In a bid to give the transport industry a big boast President Bola Tinubu has inaugurated the 37 kilometres Red Line rail system in Lagos, Nigeria.

The train is the first phase of the project, which will run from Agbado in Ogun State to Oyingbo in the heart of Lagos. When fully operational it will run 37 trips and convey about 500,000 passengers daily.

The commissioning signals the take-off of another major game changer in the state’s transportation infrastructure.

By the official commissioning of Ikeja Train Station the train is expected to reduce drastically travel time on the corridor, abate stress-induced health challenges and increase the productive capacity of the economy. It will also reduce traffic gridlock, road accidents and ensure the safety of commuters.

As part of the inter-modal connectivity of the public transportation infrastructure, the Redline is integrated with Bus Terminals at Ikeja, Oshodi, Oyingbo, Ikeja, Yaba and Iju.

To guarantee the safety of commuters and residents, the rail corridor has 10 vehicular overpasses and pedestrian bridges to separate the train from vehicular and pedestrian traffic.

No doubt, President Bola Tinubu who has spent less than one year in office has improved the transportation system in Nigeria.

Below are some key aspects of the Red Line Rail Project that must be noted and some insights into the new rail line.

It is very important to note that the Red Line Rail Project in Lagos, Nigeria, represents a significant infrastructure development aimed at improving transportation within the city.

The route: The Red Line is envisioned as a vital metro link within the Lagos-Ibadan rail corridor. Spanning 37 kilometres, it will share the right-of-way with the Lagos–Kano Standard Gauge Railway.

The route will initially run from Agbado in Ogun State to Oyingbo in Lagos, with notable stations including Agbado, Iju, Agege, Ikeja, Oshodi, Mushin, Yaba, and Oyingbo.

The project cost: The Red Line project is a substantial investment in Lagos’ urban transportation infrastructure. Initial estimates pegged the cost at $135 million under the Greater Lagos Urban Transportation Project, managed by the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA).

However, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu revealed that both the Blue and Red Lines combined would exceed ₦100 billion. Delays in the Blue Line project, initially expected to be completed by 2011, highlights the funding challenges faced by the project.

The operations: LAMATA, operating under the Ministry of Transportation, spearheads the Red Line Rail Project.

Once operational, it is expected to facilitate 37 trips daily, accommodating approximately 500,000 passengers.

The primary objectives include reducing travel time, mitigating health issues related to stress, and enhancing economic productivity.

The project aims to alleviate traffic congestion, minimise road accidents, and improve commuter safety within Lagos.

Choice of transmission:

The Red Line will utilise a diesel-powered system known as Diesel Multiple Unit (DMU), unlike the electric-powered Blue Line. DMU employs on-board diesel engines to propel multiple-unit trains. This choice of transmission aligns with the project’s objectives and operational requirements.

The Red Line Rail Project represents a significant milestone in Lagos’ transportation infrastructure development. Its inauguration promises to enhance connectivity, ease commuter burdens, and contribute to the city’s overall economic growth and development.

Infrastructure of the Red Line Rail

To ensure the smooth operation of the rail line and safety for commuters, significant infrastructure has been developed.

This includes the construction of 10 vehicular overpasses and pedestrian bridges, separating train traffic from vehicular and pedestrian flows.

In another development the FCT Minister, Mr Nyesom Wike and his team are allegedly working assiduously to ensure the Abuja light rail project as well as the ongoing construction of access roads to the train stations from Metro Train Station in Central Area to Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja are completed before May 29th.

This is to enable President Bola Tinubu commission the rail project on May 29th to mark his one year in office.

According to Wike President Bola Tinubu will ride on the Metro line by May 2024.

“We are working day and night to see that we fulfill; the promise we made to President Tinubu and residents of the FCT, that by May, Mr President will ride on the Metro line.

“We want to have access roads to the various train stations, because if you do not create access roads to the communities who will be using the train? Then the aim is defeated,’’ he said.

This is indeed a major project as it will reduce the influx of vehicles into the city.

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