By Roland Ekama.
Port users are up for another nightmarish traffic snarl as the Federal Controller of Works, Lagos, Mr. Adedamola Kuti, has disclosed that the Apapa Bridge will be closed for permanent repairs as soon as stakeholders come up with alternative routes for commuters.
The bridge is the major link with the port through Wharf Road with Ijora. Addressing journalist in Lagos on Sunday, Kuti said already, Julius Berger Plc., the contractor handling the project, is ready to move to site.
The Ministry of Works, he said, is already working on effective traffic diversion alternatives that would ensure minimal stress on road users.
On the current state of the bridge, Kuti explained that it will remain in use for now because of an earlier emergency repair work done by Julius Berger to stabilize it.
The controller stressed that Messrs Buildwell Nigeria Ltd. had completed permanent repairs on an extension of the bridge which was damaged by fire.
He said that when Julius Berger moves to site, it would carry out permanent repairs on the portion of the bridge awarded to it.
“The repair work will be done on the bridge slab on the outbound Apapa carriageway.
“The situation we have found ourselves now is that for Julius Berger to start work, it means we have to divert traffic and we are still looking for the best alternatives.
“We have all sorts of trucks; lorries on this Apapa road, and as a result, we are having problems of diversion and that is what we are still looking at.
“We hope that very soon, we will be able to come up with the best solution on how to solve the traffic challenge there.
“We are grateful to the Federal Government that has intervened by awarding the contract for the permanent repairs of the bridge to Julius Berger.
“We will be coming up with solutions on traffic diversions in the next few days,’’ he said.
He explained that some materials needed for the repairs of the bridge cannot be sourced locally.