The Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) on Thursday inaugurated 48 shops and seven apartments at the Bola Ahmed Tinubu Station of the Standard Gauge Railway in Lagos, to increase revenue generation.
It also inaugurated a new police station in the area to enhance security.
The Managing Director, NRC, Mr Fidet Okhiria, at the event, said that it was the practice of the corporation to lease property for the land owners to develop it.
He said that the Board members had advised the management to be developing properties to enable the corporation to get more revenue.
“A time will come where there will be no empty land to lease that we should have something on ground that will be bringing money so that they can get revenue.
“We took that decision, that is why we built hotel at Apapa Road recently near the Headquarters.
“First and Second floor of the building at Marine Road, are 48 shops and the last floor is seven flats of rooms, self contained, which consist of a parlour, kitchen, toilet and bedroom,” Okhiria said.
He urged NRC property management to be responsible in managing the properties so that the intention of building them would not be defeated.
The NRC boss said that the building was occupied by some railway staff members and they where relocated after a fire incident in 2021.
He said that they discovered that a lot of market activities took place in the area, so they changed it to shops with a big parking space.
Okhiria said that commissioning of another NRC Police Station at Bola Ahmed Tinubu Terminal in Apapa would motivate the policemen to protect Railway properties easily within the area.
He said that after the inauguration, the station would be handed over to the Commissioner of Police for proper utilisation.
The Managing Director, NRC Property, Mr Timothy Zalanga, said that they discovered that Marine Bridge area was more of commercial than residential.
Zalanga said that the intention of developing some of the NRC properties was to increase revenue.
He commended the Board and the Management of NRC for extending the ideas to them, promising to make the best use of the properties.
Zalanga said that the former police station was far from the terminal.
He said that after they extended the car parks at Bola Ahmed Tinubu Station, they had to build another station before relocating the police from their former place.
The Contractor of the NRC property shops and flats on Marine Road, Alhaji Mutitala Sanni, Managing Director, Lane Ltd., said the building contained 48 shops, 24 toilets and seven apartment.
“It took us six months to complete the building, while we were granted a year to complete the construction.
“We faced challenges of squatters, police and also state government, but we were able to surmount the challenges with the quick intervention of the NRC management.
“The contract was awarded with estimate of N400 million and there are lots of unforseen circumstances coming up now,” Sanni said.
The Director, Railway Transport Services, Federal Ministry of Transport, Mr Finban Zina, commended NRC for showcasing progress in their duties in spite of the situation in the country.
He urged Nigerians to focus on positive improvement of the society.