A fresh attempt is being made to resurrect, an ambitious development effort in the heart of Lagos under moves by the authorities in the state to meet growing demands of its mega city status.
At the centre of the new effort is the redevelopment of Oshodi into a transport interchange and create a world -class central business district, which will gulp $70 million.
The concept is not new as the Babatunde Fashola administration had launched a major urban renewal of the area, demolished markets and built bus parks. But under a fresh effort to redevelop the area, the state has entered into a partnership with Planet Projects through a Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) model to remodel Oshodi into a transport hub within 15 months. The project will be delivered by August next year.
Currently, construction works on the three-multi storey bus terminal buildings are at advance state and works at the car and taxi parks are also on going, while massive construction of walkways and pile caps already are on top gear.
The interchange has three-multi-storey bus terminals with waiting area, loading bays, ticketing stands, drivers lounge, parking areas, conveniences, surveillance tower and CCTV gadgets.
The Managing Director of Planet Projects Limited (PPL), Mr. Biodun Otunola told reporters that the project is geared towards making the area one of the world-class tourist destination in West Africa and a transport terminal environment safe for residents.
According to him, the design for the project is to accommodate between 500, 000 to 1million passengers per day exclusive of those coming from the airport, when fully completed.
Otunola stated that the ultimate goal of the project is to change the negative perception of Oshodi as a part of Lagos noted for notoriety in terms of crime to a safe haven, where passengers could relax and feel sure that their lives and belongings are secured from the prowling eyes of hoodlums who often swindle commuters.He said when the project is fully completed; it would improve business attraction in the area as well as free it from unnecessary traffic congestion.
Otunola disclosed that some of the components of the ongoing works include; 18 lifts, three excavators, I.C.T systems, I.T executive service system, ticketing environment, Closed Circuit Television (CCTV), two walk-ways, sky walk, a shopping mall and public conveniences amongst others.
The interchange bus terminals are to be provided with waiting area, loading bays, ticketing stands; drivers lounge, parking areas, conveniences, surveillance tower and CCTV gadgets, pedestrian bridges/sky-walks which would link the three terminals, street light and formidable security post.
He explained that the project would bring about organized transport system, boost intra-tourism for Oshodi, bequeath iconic city gateway to the State and engender economic growth and job creation.
“The benefits of the project are immeasurable for Lagosians. By the time it is delivered, our people are going to have a decent and clean environment where they could relax before picking up their next bus or relax after alighting from the bus”, he noted.An official of the government further said, “the project would bring about organised transport system, boost intra-tourism for Oshodi, bequeath iconic city gateway to the State, ensure secured and comfortable environment, as well as economic growth and job creation.
Meanwhile, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Steve Ayorinde, had in a statement recently stated that idea was conceived to provide Lagos with world-class residential, business, recreational and other facilities that would measure up to what was obtainable in other mega cities of the world.
“It added that the government was also interested in having a complete make-over of the CMS Marina axis to bring it up to standard comparable to similar choice locations in the world.Also Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Abiola Anifowoshe, has stated that the redevelopment of the area arose consequent upon the state government’s commencement of the urban regeneration of Oshodi, which is expected to see the area transformed into a world class Central Business District (CBD).
Special Adviser to the Governor on Urban Development, Yetunde Onabule also noted that the Redevelopment of Oshodi will greatly enhance the security of lives and properties in the neighbourhood.”
Oshodi, arguably, is the busiest transport hub in Nigeria with over 5,600 buses loading per day and spread over 13 different motor parks, as well as over 200,000 passengers boarding per day and about 1million pedestrians moving daily in the area, with about 76 per cent of the entire area dedicated to transport and related activities.