The Federal Government, on Saturday, partially closed the Third Mainland Bridge, Nigeria’s busiest bridge, for rehabilitation works after site inspections for traffic architecture assessments.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that work began at midnight of July 24 as workmen used crash barriers to barricade the outbound mainland traffic on Adeniji Adele junction.
They went on to line more barriers and signage on various other sections blocking off a section of the Oworonshoki bound carriageway.
Supervising the closure, the Federal Controller of Works in Lagos, Olukayode Popoola told NAN that the traffic management and diversion architecture had been perfected at an earlier stakeholder meeting on Friday.
Mr Popoola explained that vehicles going out of Lagos Island, at peak periods in the morning, would use alternative routes while the Island inbound lane would take the traffic.
He said that at the peak periods in the evening, vehicles coming out of the Island would drive up till the Adeniji Adele junction before they could be diverted for about 3.5 kilometres, then return to their normal lane.
The official added that the repairs are being carried out between Adeniji Adele Junction and Ebute Meta area of Lagos and would last for three months in the first phase.
He said that when the work is completed, the same process would be replicated for another three months on the Island-bound carriageway.
He said that the preference was for high traffic in and out the Lagos Island at peak periods.
He added that all the angles of diversion on the various points had been perfected to ensure smooth switches.
Mr Popoola said that more diversion signs were being distributed across pathways.
He appealed for lane discipline on the part of motorists to ensure smooth movement on the bridge and all alternative routes.
“We are standing at Adeniji Adele junction, where we have one diversion, now that we have partially closed the bridge.
“If you are coming in the afternoon after the close of work and you want to use the lane that you used to go to work in the morning, this is the point where you will divert.
“You will divert to the lane that is coming from Oworonshoki. So, after you have covered about 3.5 kilometres stretch where we are working on, you now divert to your normal lane; that is, the lane where we are carrying out repairs.
“People that are coming from Adekunle when there is no problem could ramp up to use the lane to enter the Third Mainland Bridge.
“We have perfected angles of diversions.
“The width we have now is about 23 metres and we have put the signage to help motorists know that there is diversion ahead,’’ he told NAN.
NAN reports that the bridge was last shut in August 2018 for a three-day investigative maintenance check.
The 11.8km bridge is the longest of the three bridges connecting Lagos Island to the Mainland.
The bridge starts from Oworonshoki, which is linked to the Apapa-Oshodi Expressway and the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway and ends at the Adeniji Adele Interchange on Lagos Island.
Constructed in 1990, the bridge was adjudged as the longest in Africa until 1996 when the October 6 Bridge in Cairo, Egypt was completed.