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LAGOS-IBADAN EXPRESSWAY CONSTRUCTION: Commuters Fear Gridlock

LAGOS-IBADAN EXPRESSWAY CONSTRUCTION: Commuters Fear Gridlock

Commuters on Thursday feared that gridlock may return to the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway as construction resumed around the Long Bridge section of the road.

Our correspondent, who was on the road on Thursday evening, observed that commuters heading towards Lagos had to slow down from around the Warewa section of the road en route to the Long Bridge.

Construction workers and machines were also seen active on the road.

A commercial driver, who identified himself as Baba Jide, while travelling towards Mowe, said it was likely that gridlock could build up by the time he would be returning to Lagos.

“With what I’m seeing, they are already dividing the road; gridlock is inevitable. It could be difficult for me when I am taking passengers back to Lagos,” Baba Jide explained.

A passenger, Efe Chibuzor, who spoke with our correspondent, was worried that the gridlock experienced last year may return.

Efe said, “This is giving last year’s vibe. We may experience gridlock again. Let’s keep watching, but this is worrisome.”

A commuter, who spoke on condition of anonymity, however, said it was necessary for the road to be completed once and for all.

“Let them complete the road once and for all, although I thought they were done, especially with the installation of the streetlights. It’s all looking good from Lagos. But this means they are not done,” the commuter said.

Meanwhile, the Ogun State Sector Command of the Federal Road Safety Corps confirmed that construction resumed on the road on Thursday morning.

In a text sent to our correspondent on Thursday by the spokesperson for the agency, Florence Okpe, the FRSC disclosed that traffic officers comprising the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, the FRSC, the Ogun State Traffic Compliance and Enforcement Corps, and the police had been deployed to manage traffic on the road.

Also, in the statement titled ‘Planned re-installation of the expansion joints on the Long Bridge by Julius Berger Nigeria,’ the FRSC said, “Sequel to the earlier publication made by the Federal Ministry of Works on the planned re-installation of the expansion joints on the Long Bridge on both sections of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, the preliminary work has commenced.”

“The exercise commenced this (Thursday) morning with the division of each section of the Long Bridge with concrete barriers. This is aimed at creating two lanes each for the work zone and vehicular movement along the expressway. The FRSC operatives, police, LASTMA, and TRACE have been deployed for traffic management,” the statement added.

Last August, the Federal Government said weather conditions that characterised the rainy season were making the timely completion of work on the expressway difficult.

The South-West Zonal Director of Highways, Federal Ministry of Works, Adedamola Kuti, said this in an interview with PUNCH Metro. Meanwhile, the work progressed to a significant stage as the year rounded off.

In February this year, motorists plying the road commended the FG for the installation of streetlights on the Long Bridge area and called for the extension to all sections of the expressway.

Our correspondent who monitored the installation of streetlights along the Kara-Warewa stretch of the Long Bridge observed that some streetlights had been installed within a stretch, while the installation was ongoing from the Long Bridge area inward Kara.