Lagos, Africa’s most populous city with 20 million citizens and dubbed ‘maddest city’, will in the near future be equipped with a newly-redesigned and rehabilitated transportation system in line with new technological advances to make its traffic flow smoothly and its people travel at ease.
This has emerged last week in the commercial capital of Nigeria, where authorities are predicting a 350% growth in the number of vehicles in Lagos over the next 25 years, and with the population doubling to 40 million by 2030.
To help the ‘maddest land’ avoid descending further into the hell of traffic and environmetal pollution set to be generated by this growth, the IBM team, fresh from a set of consulting assignments, made a set of recommendations to the Lagos State Government.
These includes, among others:
• Better coordination between agencies responsible for traffic management, police, fire and medical care
• More efficient decison-making would be based on data gathering and analysis from a variety of sources such as cell phones, call centres, cameras, and global positioning systems devices.
IBM said this accurate and up-to-date information would assist the agencies better manage traffic flow.
The global technology giant also said this information was vital to enable these agencies to wirelessly provide travellers with information such as road and traffic conditions, as well as bus, boat and toll schedules.
IBM also said its team’s recommendations incorporated existing infrastructure, and proposed strategies for self-funded projects.
Also included among the proposals was a single, integrated e-ticketing system for all modes of transportation – similar to New York City’s Metro Card or London’s Oyster card systems – and integrated fare management.
Taiwo Otiti, IBM’s Country General Manager for West Africa said an intelligent, interconnected logistics and transportation management system was a crucial must-have for any modern city. This engagement with IBM’s Executive Service Corps team will further enhance the state’s ability to deploy technology-driven solutions in a timely and strategic manner, Otiti added.
Babatunde Raji Fashola, Lagos State Governor, said: “Technology is the key to the future, and we welcome IBM’s support in this regard. The need to deploy innovative approaches that address civic challenges in Lagos State has never been greater.”
Kayode Opeifa, Lagos State commissioner for Transport, said: “IBM’s set of recommendations address our key transportation challenges and clearly enhance our ongoing efforts to fix the myriad of issues faced by our fast developing state.”
IBM said its collaboration between Lagos was funded by a Smarter Cities Challenge grant – one of only some 30 awarded globally for 2013. Launched in 2011, the IBM Smarter Cities Challenge is a three-year, 100-city, US$50 million competitive grant program.
(Source: IBM, final editing by Issa Sikiti da Silva).