By Collins Olayinka, Abuja
08 September 2021 |
Despite the emergence of Gwarimpa as one of the biggest housing estates in Africa, motorists are facing a nightmare over its unprecedented gridlock.
Commuting on the four kilometres Gwarimpa link road, which connects Kubwa- Suleja Expressway, has of recent become a nightmare as the road gets busy twice a day in the morning hours when workers go to work and evening when they close.
There are two access roads into Gwarimpa. One from Kado estate and another the link road. The Guardian learnt that the road, which connects Gwarimpa, through a bridge, is provided for in the Abuja Master plan, the one through the link road was created by motorists before the approved road was built.
Also, through the link road, there was another un tarred road created by motorists to access Gwarimpa, which has now been blocked by a private school located along the footpath-turned road by car owners as a result of gridlock.
Motorists said the link road was originally planned to be a dual carriage but has remained a single-lane road since its creation.
Not only was the road unmarked, it has neither gutter nor light, which results in excessive flooding whenever it rains. As a result, many motorists termed it, ‘the most dangerous road in Abuja’ as pedestrians are reportedly knocked down by cars almost on a daily basis.
Speaking on the condition of the road, a motorist, who identified himself simply as Joseph, said: “This road is the most dangerous road in Abuja because in the past four years, hardly has a day passed without a car killing someone on the road. “Whenever it rains, half of the road is flooded and in their attempt to navigate the narrow path, accidents are a common occurrence. The cars and lorries that had accidents on this road in the last few years are in their hundreds. Not only is the road always dark in the night because there is no light, it is also unmarked.
“So, it is very difficult for cars to know when they are encroaching into another lane. There are traffic lights along the Kado end axis of the road. I wonder why the FCDA authorities cannot extend the solar street lights to this road knowing how dangerous the road is,” he added.
Residents and motorists that use the road said now is the time for the dualisation of the link road as well as the provision of street lights to mitigate the loss of lives and property.
A traffic officer, who spoke with The Guardian on condition of anonymity, said a bad portion of the road is contributing to gridlock on the road especially during rush hours. He said it took the intervention of a Chinese man, who works for a construction company, for the road to be fixed a couple of weeks ago.
The officer blamed continued use of the access road instead of the approved one as a major problem. The Guardian gathered that on September 28, 2020, there was an attempt by the Federal Housing Authority (FHA) to close the unauthorized access bypass. The authority erected a billboard that contained a notice of closure of the road, which was placed to notify motorists of the impending closure date, but that was not to be up to now.
The billboard reads: “This road will be closed on Monday, 19th October 2020 in compliance with the Federal Capital City master plan as directed by the Hon. Minister for Works and Housing. All vehicular traffic to use the entrance at 1st Avenue by N11 Road, coming from the Kado estate. Three weeks’ notice is hereby given to the general public prior to the closure.”
12 months after the notice, the bypass is still in use.
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Gwarimpa link road
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