The Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing has finally reopened the remaining stretch of Leventis Bridge in Apapa.
The outward bound stretch of the bridge was reopened on Wednesday evening, after about eight months of rehabilitation.
The Chairman, Seaport Terminals Operators Association of Nigeria (STOAN), Princess Vicky Haastrup, recently called on the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing to expedite work on the bridge and reopen it to reduce the Apapa gridlock.
In December 2018, the Ministry reopened the Ijora/Apapa Bridge, five months after it was closed down for repairs.
The Director of Highways, South West, Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, Funsho Adebiyi, who declared the Leventis Bridge open yesterday, said it would decongest traffic into and out of Apapa.
Adebiyi said the gridlock had been a source of concern to everyone.
“Hopefully, the gridlock will end today as this section will be open so we can have the two-way traffic,” he said.
He said that section of the bridge was shut for repairs after a fire incident caused by illegal occupants under the bridge, which he said weakened the slabs at the Leventis end.
“Some of our citizens live under the bridge illegally and carry out a lot of commercial activities and they do sales of petroleum products and in the process, there was fire outbreak which became so severe that it affected the structural integrity of this bridge and a section started failing,” he said.
Adebiyi said people living under the bridge should relocate as the appropriate law enforcement agencies would be contacted to enforce their evacuation.
The Federal Controller of Works, Lagos, Adedamola Kuti, said residents around the area, as well as other road users, should expect a better flow of traffic.
According to him, the next project will be the repair of some of the expansion joints that are already damaged on the bridge, and which will be maintained regularly.
Kuti said the Federal Government had series of maintenance work on bridges in Lagos, adding that the Leventis Bridge was about the fourth to have been completed in the state.
“We have completed works on the Marine Beach Bridge, Coconut Bridge expansion works; Ijora/SevenUp Bridge; and now we have done the Leventis Bridge. Work is ongoing on Alaka Bridge in Surulere and on Third Mainland Bridge. Repair works are ongoing on several roads in Lagos, such as the Lagos-Ibadan; Lagos-Ota-Abeokuta; and Ikorodu-Sagamu,” he said.