The Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) at the weekend created a 24-hour Special Intervention and Rapid Response Unit to mitigate the impact of partial closure of adjoining roads in Agege area of the State on traffic owing to the ongoing construction of Pen Cinema Flyover.
The State Government had, on January 4, commenced the enforcement of partial closure of some roads in Agege to facilitate the construction of the 1.4km flyover which was conceived and designed by the present administration in the State to end the perennial traffic situation hitherto associated with the axis.
Speaking at the Agege Zonal Office of the agency, LASTMA’s General Manager, Mr Olawale Musa assured residents and motorists that the State Government was determined to ensure free flow of traffic throughout the construction of the bridge, and that adequate measures had been firmed up to facilitate seamless connectivity within Agege and its environs.
Musa, who spoke after meeting with the senior traffic officials and inspection of materials deployed to the axis, said the Agege-Pen Cinema axis was a crucial centre point to human and vehicular movement to all the adjourning communities and an alternative route to exit Lagos State to neighboring states.
He said due to the strategic importance of the corridor, the agency was not oblivious of the impact the temporary closure of the adjoining roads would have on movement and socio-economic activities in the area, a development he said necessitated the setting up of the 24-hours Special Intervention and Rapid Response Unit.
He said: “As part of measures to mitigate the effect of the closure of the roads, reduce travel time, eliminate traffic-induced stress and insecurity in the area, we have also beefed up the number of traffic officers, materials and operational vehicles deployed to Agege area.
“All the alternative routes and diversions opened during the construction period will be manned by LASTMA’s traffic officials all days of the week and this will ensure seamless traffic and assist motorists and commuters get to their destinations on time.”
The General Manager said that the Agency was not unmindful of the spill-over effect which the construction of the bridge and closure of roads at Pen Cinema would have on other alternative roads in the axis, especially on Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway, Abule-Egba, Iju-Fagba and Iyana-Ipaja, Agidingbi, Ogba among others.
“The creation of the 24 hours Special Intervention and Rapid Response Unit by LASTMA is as a result of the need to address the spill-over effect of the road closure and thereby assist in managing traffic across all the affected zones in the affected areas.
“In addition, the Rescue and Response Department of LASTMA has been re-organised and re-invigorated to response timely to issues of accident, abandoned and accident vehicles on the highways in the State with special focus and attention on all areas where construction works are on-going and bridges across the State,” Musa said.
Besides, Musa appealed to motorists and commuters plying the Agege-Pen Cinema axis to exercise patience, plan their journey ahead, obey road signs and cooperate with traffic officials to achieve free flow of traffic.
He further urged motorists and members of the public to always take advantage of LASTMA’s open-door policy by suggesting to the agency alternative measures and strategies capable of eliminating traffic gridlock at Agege and other parts of the State in general.