In 2009, the Lagos state government in Nigeria commenced the construction of a ten-lane highway incorporating a light rail track along the existing Lagos–Badagry expressway. With the assistance of the World Bank and at a cost of about (220 billion Naira) US$1.5 billion, when complete, the project will link Lagos with the Republic of Benin and other West African countries as part of the ECOWAS transit Corridor. While the proposed development is intended to potentially improve the business and international status of the city of Lagos, the expansion of the road has had implications for a variety of non-transport activities adjoining locations around the proposed highway. To fulfil the conditions for expanding the road, the government has had to acquire rights of way to adjoining areas of the existing expressway. Through this process, places of worship, residential buildings, motor parks, schools, markets, mechanic workshops, to mention a few activities, have been displaced in order to fulfil the project. This study explores the impact of such displacement arising from road construction activities on the livelihood of market and street traders at two markets located along the expressway; the Agboju market and New Alayabiagba market. A qualitative study with traders in the two markets in 2010 and 2012 is used to explore the often ignored implications that large-scale transport development initiatives, albeit well intentioned, can have on the livelihoods of urban residents who may attach varying meanings to a road.
- Road construction
- Urban development