The Lagos State Government on Tuesday held critical meeting with stakeholders on the prospects of achieving the 4th Mainland bridge project.
The State Government also expressed its commitment to road construction in Ikorodu to sustain current development in the area and other parts of the state.
The Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor on Works and Infrastructure, Mrs Aramide Adeyoye, said this at a stakeholders meeting on the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment of the proposed Lagos 4th Mainland Bridge Project on communities..
The communities include Bayeku Ayetoro, Agunfoye, Igbogbo, Egbe, Elepe and Erunwen, where the construction of the proposed 38 kilometres 4th Mainland Bridge will pass through.
“We know the kind of governor we have and his commitment toward infrastructure development across Lagos State.
“Right now as we speak, from what you can see, Ikorodu now is more like a construction site.
“That is how much government is committed to the development of Ikorodu.
“Our governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu has also embarked on a number of projects across the state.
“He is so committed to the 4th Mainland Bridge that he wants to make sure he starts before the end of this tenure,” he said.
At the meeting, held at the Palace of the traditional ruler of Igbogbo, Adeyoye was represented by Mr Raheem Owokoniran, Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Works and Infrastructure.
She listed several ongoing projects in Ikorodu Division and appealed for support of stakeholders in the area, toward successful take-off and completion of the project.
She said that the environmental impact assessment was imperative, and the feedback from stakeholders was important to help government make the right decision.
A Director in the Ministry, Mr Tokunbo Ajanaku, said government in its master plan had Ikorodu as a Central Business District (CBD) for economic revolution of the axis.
He said the CBD was an intentional plan of government to “make the whole of Ikorodu a place worthy of celebration”.
Ajanaku said that some of the CBDs created in the nation in the colonial days had become the most sucessful economic hubs across the nation.
He said that the State Government was building on the CBD master plan for Ikorodu for rapid economic transformation in the axis, because of its concerns for welfare of the residents.
The director said that the Government would collaborate with residents and the concessionaires on how best to recoup the investments on the proposed construction.
“We will toll, but we will toll in a manner that is internationally acceptable, ” he said.
Ajanaku said that there was currently no need to demolish any property in the axis, but pleaded with residents not to begin to sell land already earmarked for the bridge.
“We bring to you a sincere promise that this project planned on PPP will not delay, it will be delivered on schedule,” he said.
The director said that there would be nine major roads to link the planned nine interchanges.
He said that how the roads link up would depend on the stakeholders, who would choose their preferred alignments for the project.
Ajanaku said that since 1999, the state government had gathered data to ensure indigenes of communities were employed in projects in their domains, promising that Ikorodu would not be different.
“As we bring the 4th Mainland Bridge here, it will open up this division,” he said.
He said that the current plan for construction of the bridge was three years but it would begin after all stakeholders and government agree.
Mr Sesan Daini, Chairman, Igbogbo Bayeku Local Council Development Area (LCDA), reminded the residents of the efforts of the government to reduce demolition of houses on the Right of Way of the project.
He appealed to residents to show appreciation and not begin to sell land on the project alignment currently used as makeshift stalls for some traders.
Daini said Igbogbo Bayekun Road is a major complementing road to several facilities in the area, pleading that it should be included among roads linking any of the nine interchanges to the proposed bridge.
Also, the traditional ruler of Igbogbo, Oba Orimadegun Kasali, appealed to land grabbers in the council to obey instructions not to sell land on the Right of Way (RoW) of the project.
“Let us be ready to support and accommodate this project which will benefit all of us,” he said.
Kasali urged residents to continue to pray for leadership in the state while thanking the government for the proposed 4th Mainland Bridge.
He said it would bring benefits to unborn generations in Ikorodu.
Earlier, an environmentalist in the area explained to the residents in both Yoruba and English languages how the 23 kilometres of the entire construction would be in Ikorodu, its benefits and the need to support the project.
The government team held another interactive stakeholders meeting with other communities.
The meeting, for Itamaga, Sawmill (Sagamu Road), Eyita/Ojokoro, Agric-Owutu, Ishawo and Tapa communities, was held on Ikorodu-Sagamu Road.
Giving a presentations of interconnectivity of the project to Ikorodu, Mr Iwayemi Olalekan, Technical Consultant with Advanved Engineering Consultants said the project was in the second phase.
He enumerated green areas and other facilities in the EIA stage, and said that six preffered consultants had been choosen out of 52 bidders.
The Lagos State Polytechnic (LASPOTECH) raised alarm over some of its important road setbacks which would be consumed by the project while raising concerns on how a proposed rail project would fit in.
LASPOTECH, represented by an architect, Mr Ajibade Adeyemi, said some proposals had been submitted to the state government, while calling for another meeting with the institution.