Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu officially inaugurated the commercial operations of the long-anticipated Blue Line Rail in the state.
This development marks a significant milestone in the transportation infrastructure of Nigeria’s largest city.
The Blue Line Rail project was commissioned in January 2023 by former President Muhammadu Buhari, and it is now ready to serve the commuting public.
The rail line is set to connect the bustling Marina district to Mile 2, providing a vital transportation link for the city’s residents.
Governor Sanwo-Olu made history by being the first passenger to board the Blue Line Rail at the Marina station.
He was joined by several dignitaries to test-run the commercial operations, showcasing the state’s commitment to improving its public transportation system.
The Blue Line Rail project has a rich history, with its proposal dating back to 1983 during the administration of Lateef Jakande.
However, it took until 2003, under the governance of former Lagos State Governor Bola Tinubu, for the project to be initiated, marking a 20-year journey from inception to commercial operations.
Construction was undertaken by LAMATA and executed by the China Civil Engineering Construction Company, a subsidiary of China Railway Construction Corporation, demonstrating international collaboration in this infrastructure endeavor.
The first phase of the Blue Line Rail, spanning from Marina to Mile 2, comprises five stations: Marina, National Theatre, Iganmu, Alaba, and Orile station.
Notably, the travel time has been dramatically reduced, with Governor Sanwo-Olu stating that the journey from Marina to Mile 2 will now take “just less than 15 minutes” compared to over an hour in previous commuting methods.
In terms of fare, a full journey from Marina to Mile 2 will cost N750, while zonal fares will range between N400 and N500 for those not traveling the entire route.
It’s worth noting that the train runs on electrified tracks, prompting authorities to warn residents not to trespass and to use designated pedestrian bridges to ensure their safety.
Safety measures are a priority, with over 30 cameras monitoring the tracks, command and control centers in all stations, plainclothes security agents, and officers of the Lagos Neighbourhood Safety Corps accompanying passengers.
Any conflicts or altercations on the train will not be tolerated.
The Blue Line Rail’s commercial operations will begin with 12 trips per day and will expand to 76 trips per day, running from 5:30 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. when it becomes fully operational in four weeks.
The train will make brief 90-second stops at each station to ensure efficient boarding and disembarking.
Governor Sanwo-Olu’s 50% discount on all Lagos public transportation rides also applies to the Blue Line Rail, making it an attractive and cost-effective option for commuters.
The full operations of the Blue Rail Line commenced on September 4, 2023, marking a new era of convenient and efficient urban transportation for Lagosians.