The Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) has said that it was now possible for residents of Abeokuta in Ogun State, and Ibadan in Oyo State to work in Lagos with the new standard gauge rail line.
The Lagos Railway District Manager, Mr. Jerry Oche, made the assertion in an interview on Tuesday in Lagos.
Oche said that the nearly completed Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge would open lots of opportunities for various communities within the railway corridors.
“This is a huge opportunity for people living along the corridors, many people will prefer to live in Abeokuta and work in Lagos State due to speed and timeliness of the new train.
“The development will even open a lot of business opportunities for communities along the railway corridors,’’ he said.
According to him, the standard gauge when completed will travel at 150km per hour and Lagos-Ibadan is 156km journey through the standard gauge.
“So, you can reside in Ibadan and be working in Lagos, which is a very good development for people and for our economy,” he added.
“The train travelling with such speed will curtail the menace of gridlocks in the cities and relieve the highways of unnecessary pressure as the travellers will prefer to travel by train rather than on the road.”
The district manager said that the infrastructure would also bring vast job opportunities and social advantages to the youth, the populace and to the states.
“The perishable goods at the various communities will now be easily transported to the city where the demands are higher, thereby reducing the cost of goods and services,’’ Oche said.
It was gathered that Mr. Fidet Okhiria, the NRC Managing Director, had said that it would test run the Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge line early in February.
Okhiria, who disclosed this on January 23, at Ijoko in Ogun, while inspecting the project, added that work on the tracks was moving toward Lagos with 1.5 kilometres being laid daily.
“They have done a lot in laying of tracks between Abeokuta, Itori, Papalanto, Kajola, Ijoko towards the Lagos corridor.
“Within seven days the track laying will reach Iju towards Agege corridor of Lagos State.
“From here to Iju is 10 kilometres, and we are laying 1.5km on daily basis and by the first week of February, we will do a test run to Abeokuta from Lagos.