Using Big Data to solve Lagos’ Traffic Problems

Lagos State is the busiest activity hub in Nigeria. Located in the South-west region, Lagos can easily be said to be the most advanced area in Nigeria in terms of overall development, technological advancement, infrastructural growth and as well, revenue generation.

The land, surrounded by water, has experienced an influx in the number of citizens residing there over the years. This has led to the increase in population density and the problems that arise with it, one of those being traffic jams.

Using Big Data to solve Lagos' Traffic Problems Technology: General What's Hot
Foto druk verkeer in Lagos, Nigeria.
Traffic jams form along Nnamdi Azikiwe street in Lagos January 22,
2003. REUTERS/George Esiri
GE/GB

Government and individuals have devised ways over the years to combat this issue of traffic. Some work, others just relieve the problem for a while till it doesn’t work anymore. Currently, big data (i.e large amounts of digitized data) is seen as a way through which the Lagos traffic problems can be addressed.

Big data is created by the general populace from simple actions that are performed on the internet, from tweeting a post to liking something on Facebook. Three ways in which big data can be used to combat the problems of traffic is as shown below.

1. Road repairs and Development.
Government can take proper use of the big data online to identify areas that are facing challenges in terms of road networks. Most highways are busy and congested because inner road networks are not motorable. Repairing these roads would make the highways freer

2. Map out Best Routes.
With the amount of big data online, the data can be analyzed and utilized in such a way that they would be available for integration into apps which would help to determine the best routes for cars to travel by. This would free up more roads for more people instead of everyone trying to ply the same route.

3. Determine Best Move Time.
When it comes to traffic in Lagos, time is of the essence. A traffic that was not visible some forty five seconds ago could build up in the blink of an eye. With the big data, these data can be used to interpret some algorithms which would communicate us the best time to leave our abodes, helping to avoid some unnecessary traffic.

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