Connect with us

Railway

Chinese contractor lays final track beam of Lagos blue rail

Published

on

  • New rail line may extend to Agbara, Ogun State

The laying of the last track beam (T-beam) of a 27-kilometre Lagos Blue Rail Mass Transit commenced on Wednesday with a promise to deliver the landmark project in December this year as scheduled.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu flagged off the engineering procedure at the site of the Marina station of the rail project.

A statement by the governor’s Chief Press Secretary, Gboyega Akosile, said, “with the laying of the final T-Beam, all difficult civil works standing in the way of the Lagos Blue Rail Line, which started in 2012, have been overcome.

“The contractor – China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) – will now go ahead to set the rail tracks along the alignment and move the project to completion.”

It said Governor Sanwo-Olu got the commitment of the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA) and the contractor to the December deadline for the Blue Line project’s completion.

Lagos Government will be delivering two rail mass transit projects within the first term of the Sanwo-Olu administration. The Blue Line traversing between Mile 2 and Marina will be operated on Electric Motor Unit (EMU); while the 37-kilometre Red Line, from Agbado to Ebute Metta, will operate on Automotive Gas Oil (AGO).

Speaking at the launch of the last T-Beam on the Blue Line, Sanwo-Olu said the achievement signposted his administration’s commitment to bringing succour to Lagosians and give them choices in mass transportation.

The governor said the rail projects represented the audacity of his administration’s vision to deliver a robust integrated transit system as encapsulated in the Traffic Management and Transportation pillar of his government’s T.H.E.M.E.S. development agenda.

He said, “Today’s final T-beam launch indicates that we are gradually inching to the completion of the civil infrastructure for the first phase of the Blue Line traversing from Mile 2 to Marina. The engineering work today completes a total of 1,967 piles foundation, while we have also completed three 306 platforms, 310 piers, 267 cover beams and erection of 984 T-beams.

“We are not just making promises; people are beginning to see for themselves that all the milestones and the difficult tasks we are meant to achieve to ensure operation of the Blue Line are being achieved. The Marina Station, which is the iconic terminal for the Blue Line, will be completed within two-and-half months. I am restating here that we will formally complete this Blue Line before December 31, 2022.”

The governor said the two sets of EMU coaches already procured for the Blue Line operations would arrive in Lagos from China before the end of October. He said the rail line would be test run immediately after completion, while passenger movement would start within the first quarter of 2023.

Sanwo-Olu said the construction of the second phase of the Blue Line project would commence after the start of operation, which would extend the rail project from Mile 2 to Okokomaiko.

He said Blue Line stations would be built at Festac, Alakija, Trade Fair, Volkswagen, LASU and Okokomaiko.

The governor disclosed that talks were being held with the Ogun State Government for possible extension of the rail line to Agbara.

He said, “The second phase of the Blue Line project will be an easy infrastructure to develop because the marked alignment for stations and tracks are largely at grid level. While we are at this, the Red Line is also on the way. This is a start-and-end project for our administration, with about seven stations concurrently being built. This will redefine mass transportation in Lagos.

“To our citizens, I say the Blue Line is for real and you will ride on it in no distant future. For the Doubting Thomases and people that do not like our face, their eyes cannot disbelieve in the infrastructure we are bequeathing to the citizens of our State. They cannot disbelieve in our bold effort and commitment to improve mobility and deliver transport infrastructure that brings ease to our people.”

LAMATA Managing Director, Abimbola Akinajo, an engineer, said the first 13-kilometre stretch of the Blue Line construction was divided into four phases to enable the government to fund the project from its internally generated revenue.

To get to the current status, she said the construction work experienced disturbances and delays in the relocation of submarine cables, submarine natural gas pipelines, and removal of underground shipwrecks.

“Just as we are laying the final T-beam for the rail tracks, we are also currently retrofitting the train stations at Mile 2, Alaba, Iganmu and National Theatre with light in readiness for passenger operation in the first quarter of 2023,” Akinajo said.

CCECC Chairman, Mr Liu Wei Min, described the event as the most significant level of the project.

He said, “We express our sincere gratitude to the present administration under the leadership of Mr Sanwo-Olu in reaching this milestone.

“We will continue to work to meet the ultimate target in delivering the entire project with high standards and quality.”

The T-beam laying event was also attended by Consul General of the People’s Republic of China in Lagos, Mr Chu Mao ming.

 

 

Railway

NRC develops framework for PPP, working with LASG for red line take-off

Published

on

Nigerian Railway Corporation has developed a train track access framework to encourage Public-Private Partnership (PPP) in the operation of effective train services in the country, Managing Director of the NRC, Fidet Okhiria, has said.

He also said the NRC had set up a team to work with the Lagos State Government to ensure smooth launch and effective running of the state government’s mass transit train called the Red Line.

He stated this during a press briefing held Wednesday at the NRC’s headquarters, Ebute Meta, Lagos.

He said that the establishment of train track access framework would enable third parties to use the track.

Okhiria said the framework would increase private sector participation and the usage of the trackers.

He said it would also improve inter-state business and passengers would pay lesser amount for carriage of goods from one point to another.

He said, “We have tendered the Train Track Access Framework to the Board of the NRC during our last meeting and we hope that the framework will be approved at the next board meeting.

“We have set up a team to work with the Lagos State Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA) to enable them to operate successfully.

“LAMATA had just received wagons for the Red Line and hopefully they will start operation by the first quarter of 2023.”

The state government some days took delivery of Talgo Series 8 trains acquired from Milwaukee for the Red Line with a promise that the first quarter delivery date for the train service remained sacrosant.

Okhiria also said on Wednesday that efforts were being made by the Federal Government to adequately secure trains’ passengers nationwide as well as address other industry issues.

He said the incident of March 28, 2022 impacted not just on the Abuja-Kaduna route but on all the train services nationwide but added that the confidence of Nigerians on train ride as the safest means of transportation was gradually being restored.

Continue Reading

Railway

Train attack: FG loses N531m revenue in five months

Published

on

The suspension of the Abuja-Kaduna train service within five months has cost the Nigerian Railway Corporation N531m in revenue loss, the Managing Director of the firm, Fidet Okhiria, has said.

He stated this in Lagos on Wednesday at a quarterly press briefing of the corporation.

He said the amount represented what could have been made through ticket sales for the standard gauge passenger train, which was attacked by terrorists about six months ago.

Since terrorists on March 28 attacked the Abuja-Kaduna train, killing eight people and abducting 62 passengers, it has not resumed operation.

Although many of those held hostage have been released in piecemeal, the Federal Government has said train service would not be restored on the route until all those still in captivity are released and adequate security measures put in place along the corridor.

Okhiria said, “We have lost N531m between March 28 when the train attack happened and August through the expected ticket sales on the suspended Abuja-Kaduna Train Service (AKTS).”

Although the NRC MD said the corporation had restored the damaged rolling stock and fixed the track, the train service would not resume without the safe release of the remaining passengers held hostage.

He said four railway workers were among those still being held captive.

He said, “We believe proper security measures should be put in place. Government has set up a committee to ensure maximum security for both train passengers and facilities during operation.

“The minister (of transportation) is leading the struggle for the safe release of those still in captivity. We could not go with force to ensure noone loses their life.”

Okhiria said the Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge train was running four trips daily, just as the other regular train service including Warri-Itakpe line.

“Lagos-Ibadan train service has not stopped running one day. It operates four daily trips. The Itakpe-Warri line runs two trains a day,” he said.

Continue Reading

Railway

Updated: No insurance cover for victims of Abuja-Kaduna train attack – NRC

Published

on

Train passengers held captive by terrorists after the attack on Abuja-Kaduna rail will not receive any compensation from insurance company, the Managing Director of the Nigerian Railway Corporation, Engr. Fidet Okhiria, has said.

He disclosed this on Wednesday at a press conference in Lagos, explaining that although the corporation had an insurance policy for both rolling stock and train passengers, it did not cover banditry and terrorism.
The terrorists had on March 28, attacked an Abuja-Kaduna-bound passenger train, killing eight people, injuring several others, while 62 of the passengers were abducted.
Many of those held hostage have been released in piecemeal.

Continue Reading

Trending