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Monday, 25 September 2023 14:11

THE RAIL WAY ALTERNATIVE

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 In order to provide a long-term solution to the chronic transportation issues in the Nigerian megacity, the new Lagos train service will need to defy the pattern of subpar maintenance that has dogged past Chinese-funded mass transit projects in Africa. According to LAMATA, the transportation organization for Lagos State, 20,000 people have utilized the Blue Line, which was constructed by China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, since its opening on September 4.

It connects two terminals that are located between a bustling suburb of the mainland metropolis and a marina area known for its collection of tall bank buildings and close proximity to wealthy areas.

Blue Line 1

The energy of Lagos' 20 million citizens, thousands of small enterprises, and giant organizations drives Africa's greatest economy, which will have a gross domestic output of $75 billion in 2021. However, the city is generally crowded during peak times, impeding simple travel and restricting its and Nigeria's growth. This is despite bridges being erected to connect both sides of the lagoon that divides the city. A full trip on the new train takes 28 minutes and costs 750 naira ($1), with 90-second breaks at three stations along the way.

 

Blue Line

Oluwabusola, a 25-year-old physiotherapist, intends to take the rail to work every day because it cuts her commute time in half and is more affordable than taking the car. If it suddenly becomes unavailable, I'll be hurt, she added. Other travelers who recalled the typical progression of high-profile infrastructure projects in Nigeria—from excitement to disillusionment—reflected this fear. "We are good at copying Western innovation, but not their maintenance," said Damian Olisa, a 49-year-old shoe dealer taking his maiden ride.

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