The Lagos State Government has agreed a deal for the purchase of two high-speed trains in its bid to improve transportation and traffic management for its commuters.
Speaking on the development on Wednesday, the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State – Mr Gboyega Akoshile, had revealed the latest on the acquisition.
According to his press release, both high speed trains comprise of 10 cars Talgo 330kmph trains; which were purchased by Governor Sanwo-Olu at a top-tier event at Talgo Incorporated in the United States. The gathering which held on Tuesday at the companies Milwaukee facilities, also saw the attendance of Lagos State Commissioner for Transportation, Dr Frederic Oladeinde; Special Adviser on Works, Aramide Adeyoye, and Managing Director of Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA), Abimbola Akinajo.
Mr Akoshile also stated categorically that the trains will be a key part of the Red Line rail project which will have no less than eleven stations when completed. The 37 kilometers track rail will also serve as the first metro system in West Africa to be fully operational.
He also welcomed the concept of job provision for the citizens and spoke on a potential economic growth upon completion of the project.
“A train is not something you can just go on the shelf and pick up,” the governor was quoted as saying at the event. “We are very lucky to get brand new trains. We have seen our beautiful white and red trains. Coincidentally, the rail line is called Red Line and you can see they have given us the colour. We are just going to brand it and put up our seal there.
“We hope that this (purchase of the trains) will be the beginning of a mutually beneficial business relationship. Providing source of livelihood for our citizens is all about providing jobs for our people and that is what we are doing. It is about ensuring that we can build our economy; people can move from one location to another, and businesses can grow.
“Part of what we have done in the last two and half years is to have what we call Integrated Urban Mass transportation system, where we will be using road infrastructure, waterway infrastructure, and rail infrastructure so that we can move over 20 million Lagosians within and around the city.”
Furthermore, Governor Sanwo-Olu was received by the acting Milwaukee Mayor — Cavalier Johnson on Tuesday. He also confirmed that the trains have been inspected by his team whilst speaking at the closed event that same day.
According to him, the Red Line first phase will commence in the last quarter of the year or at the start of 2023 and will hold no less than 500,000 commuters on a daily basis.
Meanwhile, the CEO and President of Talgo, USA – Antonio Perez, has reiterated the importance of using both trains, adding that it is key to the general performance of the rail network.