The 13-km Lagos Blue Line Rail service train’s test run was started yesterday by the Lagos State Government.
The University of Lagos instructors and their students, as well as leaders of organizations under the Ministry of Transportation, were among the elite Nigerians to witness the debut of the train system at the Marina Train Station in Lagos.
The engineer who is the managing director of the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transportation Authority (LAMATA), Mrs. Abimbola Akinajo, led the launch of the train service. She announced that Lagosians from all walks of life were welcome to board the train and experience its comfort over the course of the next two months.
She said soon, LAMATA will ask Nigerians who wished to ride on the train to send in their email addresses, and they will be contacted and informed when they will be able to board the train.
Furthermore, she said traders, craftsmen, students, members of the media, and other professionals would be invited.
The LAMATA chairman explained that the autonomous processing unit could handle 250 passengers per minute when commercial operation started, adding that the schedule was set up to have trains run every three minutes.
She said for the first phase, the Blue light train would be able to carry between 200,000 and 250,000 passengers a day, based on the availability of rolling stock, adding that “right now, the government has purchased three rolling stocks, while another six may be purchased when the government completes the second phase.
“Operations will run from 5:30am to 11pm every day. The system is designed to run one train in three minutes. During rush hours, we will pull more trains, while during off-peak periods, we will pull off the operation,” she said.
On the fare, Akinajo said the government “is still working on the template that will make the train affordable to the people, based on what is going on right now.”
The Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Transportation, Abdulhafiz Toriola, an engineer, said the government was excited that it eventually delivered on the Blue line train. “The Red Line train is also on stream and will be delivered anytime soon.”
Idowu Oguntola, the managing director of Lagos Bus Services Ltd., expressed his excitement at riding the train and noted the tremendous potential that awaited Lagosians.
Mr. Emmanuel, the general manager of the Lagos State Waterways Authority (LASWA), applauded the government’s wisdom in deciding to integrate all means of transportation in which Lagos State had a competitive edge.
The senate candidate for Lagos Central and representative for Lagos Island, Esinlokun-Sanni, said that the Blue Line rail would reduce people’s travel times between Mile 2 axis and Lagos Island.