Why Lagos Needs To Build Her Water Transport

Water transport in Lagos offers a viable alternative to the heavily congested road networks. It takes Lagosians an average of 4 hours to complete a 61 km commute from Ikorodu to Ajah. For context, it would take an average of one hour to complete a similar distance, if the roads were free from traffic congestion. In contrast, when you go by the sea option, you can realistically move from the Ferry terminal in Ikorodu to Badore, Ajah in less than 30 minutes. This means that Lagosians are spending 5x more time on the road than they would by sea.

Lagos, as we know, is the economic nerve centre of Nigeria and West Africa at large, with a lot of untapped potential. One of these untapped potentials is the water transport system in the state. For a population of nearly 20 million people in Lagos, the road transportation infrastructure in

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Lagos, is simply inefficient and chaotic. The majority of people living in Lagos are losing valuable work time in traffic. Around the world, one of the biggest drivers of economic development is transport infrastructure. How fast and cheaply people and goods can be moved from one place to another, determines how far an economy can grow. The most affordable, environmentally friendly, and energy-efficient method of moving all kinds of freight is through inland water transportation.

Water is a gold mine, and countries like China, Russia, Vietnam and many other cities around the world have seized its potential to amass economic prosperity. According to the National Inland Waterways Authority, Nigeria is blessed with a vast network of waterways totalling 10,000 kilometres, of which 3,800 are navigable at certain times of the year. Twenty-eight of Nigeria’s 36 States can be accessed through the water. The country also has water links to five (5) of its neighbouring countries, including Benin Republic (Port Novo), Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon, Chad and Niger Republic by water. As of today, 90% of all imports and exports from Africa and more than 80% of all trade in the world are moved by sea. With this in mind, it has become critical for the continent of Africa, specifically Nigeria, to make the most of the opportunities provided by the maritime industry.

In this article, we will highlight reasons why this has become even more paramount for Lagos and its real estate market. Before we dive in, why is water transport so important to an economy and the real estate market?

Water provides one of the safest and most affordable means of transport, and has proven to encourage economic growth, reduce poverty, and open up work prospects for young people around the world. For Lagos, most people cannot afford to live in places where they work due to high apartment prices. Building the Lagos waterways will help in stabilizing the property market and spur economic growth in a number of ways.

Leveraging Water Transport in Lagos for Congestion Relief and Economic Development

By leveraging the potential of water transport in Lagos, significant advantages can be achieved, including relieving congestion and driving economic development.

A well-planned water transportation infrastructure can boost regional economic development. By facilitating efficient transportation of products and people, it can create job opportunities, attract investment, and ease trade and commerce. It can also benefit the local economy by promoting tourism and recreational activities. Lagos State, like many other major cities, is plagued by traffic congestion on its roadways. Building a water transportation system can assist alleviate traffic congestion by providing commuters with an alternate method of transportation, lowering the number of automobiles on the roads, and improving overall traffic flow.

Read also: How to Negotiate Rent Prices with Agents in Lagos, Nigeria

Social inclusion, efficiency and time savings

By offering cheap transportation alternatives for all individuals, including those who may not have access to private vehicles or public transportation, the construction of a water transportation infrastructure can promote social inclusion. It has the potential to increase mobility for vulnerable populations, improve access to education, healthcare, and other critical services, and promote social equity. In some cases, water transport can be more efficient and time-saving than road transport. Waterways can provide direct routes and bypass traffic bottlenecks, allowing for more reliable and speedier transportation. This is especially useful for commuters commuting long distances or for transporting products.

Environmental sustainability, Resilience and disaster preparedness

Water transportation is often seen as more environmentally friendly than road transportation. When compared to road vehicles, boats and ships can use cleaner fuels, generate less greenhouse emissions, and have a lower carbon footprint. Creating a water transportation system can help to reduce air pollution and mitigate the effects of climate change. Lagos State is prone to natural catastrophes such as flooding and sea level rise due to its coastal location. Creating a water transportation system with adequate infrastructure and disaster preparedness procedures can help the region be more resilient to such occurrences and provide alternate transportation options during calamities. 

To summarize, constructing a water transportation system in Lagos State, or any other coastal or water-rich location, can give several benefits such as congestion alleviation, efficiency, environmental sustainability, economic development, resilience, and social inclusion. It has the potential to improve the region’s and its people’s general well-being and progress.

Let us know other reasons why Lagos needs to build her water transport by sending an email to research@buyletlive.com. You can also join the conversation on LinkedIn and Instagram.

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