By Grace Alegba and Florence Onuegbu
Lagos, Nov. 1, 2020 The Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Sunday flagged off the reconstruction and upgrading of the Eti-Osa-Lekki-Epe Expressway, saying that the project will revolutionize trade and commerce in the state.
At the launch of the project at Eleko, Sanwo-Olu said government knew the importance of the Eti-Osa-Lekki-Epe Expressway which houses the Lekki Free Trade Zone and thriving estates businesses.
He said transportation and traffic Management were the pillar of his administration’s THEMES Agenda aimed at bringing economic prosperity to stakeholders on the axis and commerce to the state.
THEMES represent Traffic Management and Transportation; Health and Environment; Education and Technology; Making Lagos a 21st Century state; Security and Governance.
He said the road, when completed, will complement the new network of roads in Epe and ease transportation and connectivity to improved socio-economic activities in the Eti-Osa-Lekki-Epe Corridor.
He said road will connect the Regional Road under construction as well as the proposed Fourth Mainland Bridge, naming the 10 communities that will benefit from the project as Eleko, Onose, Alatishe, Aiyeteju, Ajaganabe, Oko Orisan, Ilasan, Lekki Village, and Epe.
Sanwo-Olu said since efforts by successive administrations could not solve the problem of quick road degeneration and lack of proper drainage on the highway, his administration is taking measures to solve the perennial problem.
He said when completed, the expressway will have a three-lane dual carriageway, reinforced concrete road pavement with dedicated lane in each direction for trucks and a rigid pavement to accommodate the envisaged axle loading.
He listed other features as a rail path for future introduction of rail transport on the corridor as well as weigh bridges to check axle load on the highway.
He said the project, to be done through direct labour to save cost, will be done in two phases, the first of which is expected to begin immediately to cover 18.75 kilometres from Eleko Junction to Epe-T-Junction.
He added that the second phase, expected to commence in 2021, will cover 26.7 kilometres from Abraham Adesanya Roundabout to Eleko Junction.
He said government is adopting the best construction methods, using rigid pavement to make the road strong and durable. The road is expected to last over 40 years.
“The scope of work will encompass an upgrade in both capacity and pavement structure, the provision of reinforced concrete drains, culverts and median barriers, the relocation of public utilities, provision of reinforced concrete rigid pavement with road markings, installation of weigh bridges on each side of the road, preservation of a rail line corridor within the 50-metre Right of Way, the provision of transverse and longitudinal service ducts and the provision of a crushed stone base course among others,’’ he said.
The governor said the project will create jobs and appealled to youths and residents in the area to take ownership of the project.
Sanwo-Olu said his administration will not be deterred in its pursuit to deliver quality infrastructure to Lagos residents in spite of economic challenges sparked by COVID-19 pandemic and recent unrests in the state.
“With our shared vision and resources at our disposal, it is time to redouble our efforts while looking to the future with confidence as we rebuild Lagos State together,’’ he said.
He advised the contractor handling the project, Cranburge Construction, to speed up construction and meet 20-month delivery date.
The Special Adviser to the Governor on Works and Infrastructure, Mrs Aramide Adeyoye, had said investment in critical infrastructure is important to the Sanwo-Olu government.
She added that the APC is following a laid-down master plan for massive infrastructure regeneration and renewal in the state which it will not deviate from to make Lagos better.
The Permanent Secretary in the State ministry of Works, Mr Olujimi Hotonu, lawmakers representing the area and traditional rulers in attendance also commended the project, saying it comes with numerous advantages.