The partial closure of Third Mainland Bridge for repairs has actually thrown up roads rehabilitation competition in Lagos metropolis between the federal and state agencies. Dayo Ayeyemi reports
It is no longer news that the Third Mainland Bridge was partially closed for rehabilitation of its expansion joints, replacement of expired bearings and resurfacing at the weekend.
However, its closure has fueled repairs of other roads and bridges in Lagos metropolis. Currently, over 20 roads have received attention due to the partial closure. These roads, which cut across the state, are currently serving as alternative routes to motorists, pending the completion and opening of the bridge to traffic in January 2021.
The beauty of the season is that as the Federal Government is making frantic efforts to rehabilitate the federal roads in the metropolis, the state authority is not living any stone unturned to ensure that roads under its purview are fixed for ease of traffic during the period. In what members of the public described as “healthy competition,” the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) and the Lagos Public Works Corporation are really speeding up rehabilitation works on many roads. From Mushin to Yaba, Oyingbo, Eric Moore to Ijora, Ebute-metta to Costain, roads are wearing a new look.
Apart from the Third Mainland Bridge, expansion joints and bearings of Eko and Marine bridges are also been replaced, hence the need for repairs of alternative roads.
FERMA Speaking to New Telegraph on the road repairs in Lagos, the South West II Zonal Coordinator, Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA), Mr. Rufus Onimisi, said the agency was speeding up alternative routes’ repairs to ensure smooth rides and avert gridlock during partial closure of the Third Mainland Bridge.
Onimisi listed roads that had been repaired and still receiving attention to include Herbert Macaulay Way, Oyingbo, Bode Thomas, Eric Moore, Ijora Course Way, Ijora Olopa and Iddo roads.
According to Onimisi, FERMA had been busy fixing bad roads and fast tracking reha bilitation of major alternative routes to avert traffic congestions during the bridge’s closure. He explained that the agency had completed repairs of the Oyingbo/ Iddo section and immediately moved its equipment to continue work on the Ijora 7Up area. He said: “Our agency carries out maintaince all year round and these roads are in our programme but we are expediting action because of the Third Mainland Bridge closure.
“Here, the graders are scarifying the bad materials, it is damaged ashpalt so we are removing them.We will now introduce stone base, and then we have two layers of asphalt, we have the binder course, which we are going to lay on the stone base after which we will now lay the wearing course.”
According to him, the agency was stabilizing the road on Agege Motor Road with bounders, while tackling a major drainage problem causing flooding before embarking on permanent repairs. Partial Closure Supervising the closure of the Third Mainland Bridge at the weekend, the Federal Controller of Works in Lagos, Mr Olukayode Popoola, said the traffic management and diversion architecture had been perfected at an earlier stakeholder meeting. Popoola explained that vehicles outbound the Lagos Island, at peak periods in the morning, would use alternative routes, while the Island inbound lane would take the traffic.
He said that at the peak periods in the evening, vehicles coming out of the Island would drive up till the Adeniji Adele junction before they could be diverted for about 3.5 kilometres, then return to their normal lane. The controller added that the repairs are being carried out between Adeniji Adele Junction and Ebute Meta area of Lagos and would last for three months in the first phase.
He said that when the work is completed, the same process would be replicated for another three months on the Island-bound carriageway. Popoola appealed for lane discipline on the part of motorists to ensure smooth movement on the bridge and all alternative routes. Special Adviser to Lagos State Governor on Works and Infrastructure, Mrs Aramide Adeyoye, said that 10 major access roads had been mapped out and worked on for use during closure of the Third Mainland Bridge.
She pointed out that the ministry carried out speedy rehabilitation of alternative roads to ease movement during the closure. “Our ministry largely undertook repairs in collaboration with the Lagos State Public Works Corporation just to make sure that the alternative routes are in a motorable state for people to make use for this period. She stated that all the routes were identified and worked on. “One of them is Eric Moore here at Abebe Junction,’’ she said.
Adeyoye said that the resurfacing of the Abebe road section was done repeatedly because of constant abuse of the road infrastructure by Lagos residents. Last line Third Mainland Bridge was last shut in August 2018 for a three day investigative maintenance check.