Home » Headlines, Lagos, State News » Inside Lagos Blue Rail Line train where comfort, pleasure, pain meet

Inside Lagos Blue Rail Line train where comfort, pleasure, pain meet

By Tola Adenubi

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu recently joined fellow Lagosians and state officials in celebrating the opening of the 13-kilometer Marina-Mile 2 Lagos Blue Rail Line. In this report, Saturday Tribune’s TOLA ADENUBI joined the train ride from Mile 2 to Marina during on Thursday and Friday, and brings happenings onboard. Excerpts:

The 13-kilometer Mile 2 to Marina Lagos Blue Rail Line is definitely a game changer for transportation within the commercial nerve center of the nation, Lagos.

For residents of Mile 2, Festac and Amuwo-Odofin environs, it’s a new way of commuting between the Ojo area of Lagos and the ever-busy Marina/CMS centre of business activities.

The trip which lasts less than 20 minutes, is a combination of comfort, pleasure and some temporary pains.

Comfortability

The comfort for commuters inside the Lagos Blue Rail Line train is top notch as far as intra-state mode of transportation is presently concerned in Lagos. The train carriages are equipped with state-of-the-art seats, television screens and an unfailing cooling system.

It provides a huge relief from the ever-frustrating Lagos traffic compared to what obtains on the roads between Marina and Mile 2. Within 15 minutes, passengers are already at their destinations after boarding the train.

Pleasure

The train ride also takes passengers high up above the National Theater in Iganmu, high up above the Apongbon end of the Third Mainland Bridge, allowing passengers rare viewing access to sights that will ordinarily be visible only when onboard a plane that is descending into an airport.

The trip also allows passengers the rare view of the Lagos Lagoon from above, giving viewing access to some vessels berthed at the quay side of the Lagos ports from a vantage point.

Pains

Top on the low points onboard the Lagos Blue Line is the overcrowded nature of most of its carriages. With a 50 percent slash of transportation fares on all state-controlled modes of transport, the Lagos Blue Line is being besieged by more passengers because Mile 2 to Marina trip which normally should be N700, is being charged at N350.

The two times when Saturday Tribune reporter boarded the Lagos Blue Rail train, there was no space to sit for him as the train was filled to the brim during the early morning trip from Mile 2 to Marina.

Speaking with the Saturday Tribune, some of the passengers explained that allowing too many people to stand during a rail trip doesn’t match the luxury the ride offers.

According to Mr. Tochukwu John, a trader who sells on the Lagos Island, “Too many people standing doesn’t look too good to me. I have been inside the train since around past 8am, but the train won’t leave for Marina even when all the seats had been taken by passengers.

“More people kept arriving and the numbers of those standing kept rising. A friend of mine who joined me in the train couldn’t get a seat and had to stand from Mile 2 to Marina. The crowd standing isn’t good for a kind of luxury ride like this. I hope the sophistication that the Lagos Blue Rail started with won’t depreciate like what we experienced on the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) scheme.

Distance from bus stops

Another low point is the distance commuters have to trek to before getting into the hustle and bustle of Marina/CMS business area. The location of the Marina Terminal of the Lagos Blue Line is a little bit of a distance from the CMS bus-stop, thus when passengers disembark or want to board the trains, they have to walk up to 20 minutes to or from the CMS/Marina bus stop before getting to the Blue Rail Terminal.

“Its more stressful when you have just closed from work and you are so tired. Sometimes, I take commercial bus home depending on how tired I am. The Terminal is a little bit a distance from CMS. Walking down that distance can be discouraging sometimes. In the morning, if you have got company, its easier, but in the evening, walking there alone without company from Marina can be tiring,” Tochukwu told Saturday Tribune.

Again, checks by Saturday Tribune revealed that passengers going to places like Leventis or Apongbon need not bother to board the Lagos Blue Line as it doesn’t stop at these bus stops.

After the train stops at the National Theater, its next and final port of call is the Marina Terminal.

Speaking with the Saturday Tribune, a passenger, Joy Adaeze explained that getting a bus back to Leventis can be frustrating at times after alighting from the Lagos Blue Rail in Marina.

“My shop is at Leventis but I stay in Festac. Anytime I board the Lagos Blue Rail, I will be inside and the train will glide past the Leventis bus stop where I am going to, and head to Marina.

“The train doesn’t stop at Leventis bus stop, so for some of us that are going to Leventis, we will still have to board a commercial bus back to Leventis from CMS, that is after walking a distance from the Blue Rail Terminal to CMS.

“I will like the state government to help us look into this. Why the train doesn’t have a bus stop at Leventis is amusing. Between the National Theater and CMS, there is a major bus stop called Leventis. The Blue Rail train should be stopping at Leventis. It’s annoying when I am inside the Lagos Blue Rail and will be looking at Leventis down below from atop the rail, but cannot come down because there is no bus stop there for the train.

“Trekking a distance from the Lagos Blue Rail Terminal to CMS only to board a bus back to Leventis isn’t the best. I believe government should look into this,” Joy Adaeze told Saturday Tribune.

-Nigerian Tribunewp_posts

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Posted by on Sep 10 2023. Filed under Headlines, Lagos, State News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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