The Lagos State Government wednesday declared that car owners and drivers would no longer pay toll at the Lekki-Ikoyi Link Bridge and Admiralty Toll Plazas for a period of six hours daily.
The state government disclosed that it ordered free passage at the toll plazas to unlock traffic congestion along the Victoria-Island-Lekki-Oniru-Ajah corridor with expectation that the decision would reduce travel time at the Lekki axis by 50 per cent.
The state Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, gave the order after inspecting traffic sore points along the Victoria Island-Lekki-Ajah axis wednesday alongside the Deputy Governor, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat and the Secretary to the State Government, Mrs. Folashade Jaji, among others.
After the inspection, Sanwo-Olu said the Lekki-Ikoyi Link Bridge and Admiralty Lekki toll plazas “will today be thrown open for vehicles for about six hours peak time, three hours in the morning and three hours in the evening.”
Specifically, the governor noted that the two plazas “will be open for free passage to vehicles between 6.30 a.m. and 9.30 a.m. as well as between 4.30 p.m. and 8.00p.m.”
He explained the rationale behind the decision, which he said, would enable the state government conduct traffic analysis in the area and find solutions to traffic gridlock and other issues in the Victoria Island-Lekki-Oniru corridor.
He said the objective “is that we want to do a real simulation of traffic study. When you open the toll plaza, where does the traffic get into? Does it disperse and go completely away? Or do we transfer it somewhere else.
“It is only when we do this at the peak hour that we will be able to understand and appreciate what the effect will be. We just want to do a study. We also appreciate Lagos residents, especially with respect to the challenges we are having at these plazas.
“We are not unmindful of the challenge we have with the two plazas. But our government wants to bring about a different travel time. The way we want to do it is to have online real time study of what all the issues are,” Sanwo-Olu explained.
After the study, the governor noted that the state government would be able “to analyse traffic dimension along the two routes. What are the next steps or solutions we need to bring about.”
Also, Sanwo-Olu disclosed that from October 1, the entire software of the Admiralty bridge would be changed to electronic plaza, meaning that car owners and drivers would no longer pay cash.
He said: “We are trying to reconfigure and come up with a solution which will take us three months. From now to October, that will reduce traffic and travel time to 50 per cent. It will just be touch and go. It will be quicker and faster.”
Before the inspection, Sanwo-Olu visited victims of the recent Ijegun pipeline fire incident who are receiving treatment at the Trauma and Burns Unit of the Gbagada General Hospital.