Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State on Tuesday implored the Federal Government to cooperate with the state government on the construction of its Red Line railway project.
Ambode made the remark at the ground breaking of the national railway project performed by the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, at the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) premises, Ebute-Metta, Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the project — the Lagos-Ibadan Modernisation rail project — is a standard gauge rail line, with extension to the Lagos Port Complex in Apapa
It was awarded to the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation at the cost of $1.5 billion (about N458bn).
Ambode, who described the event as historic, promised that the state’s Red Line project which shared the same corridor and Right of Way with the Lagos-Abeokuta-Ibadan rail line, would breathe a new lease of life for the people.
He said it would as well reduce production hours wasted on the roads.
Ambode said that less resources would also be expended on road repair and maintenance once the rail line commenced.
He commended the Federal Government for prioritising the project, saying it greatly complements the efforts to deliver a transport system that was befitting of a modern city-state.
“We are excited about this project because it will further open up the economy of the South/West region and facilitate regional integration and growth.
“The agricultural sector will receive a long awaited boost, as this rail line will be a fast and convenient means of transporting farm produce from the hinterlands to the city, thereby increasing the economy of these places,” he said.
Earlier, the Minister of Transportation, Mr Rotimi Amaechi, noted that the project, expected to be completed before or in December 2018, had inter-modal linkage with the rail system of Lagos and Ogun States.