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|City centre and skyline of Lagos shown from above|
|Nickname(s): lag city, Lasgidi, Gidi|
|Coordinates: 6°27′11″N 3°23′45″ECoordinates: 6°27′11″N 3°23′45″E|
|LGA||Lagos Island |
|• Governor||Babatunde Fashola (ACN)|
|• Urban||999.6 km2 (385.9 sq mi)|
|Population (2006 census, preliminary)|
|• Density||7,941/km2 (20,170/sq mi)|
|Time zone||WAT (UTC+1) (UTC+1)|
|HDI rank||1st (2011)|
Lagos is a huge metropolis which originated on islands separated by creeks, such as Lagos Island, fringing the southwest mouth of Lagos Lagoon whilst protected from the Atlantic Ocean by long sand spits such as Bar Beach, which stretch up to 100 km east and west of the mouth. From the beginning, Lagos has expanded on the mainland west of the lagoon and the conurbation, including Ikeja and Agege, now reaches more than 40 km north-west of Lagos Island. Some suburbs include Ikorodu, Epe and Badagry, and more local councils have recently been created, bringing the total number of local governments in Lagos to 57.
Main article: History of Lagos Lagos was a war camp for members of the Benin Empire, who referred to it as Eko. The Yoruba still use the name Eko to refer to Lagos. Lagos, which means "lakes", was a name given to the settlement by the Portuguese. The present day Lagos state has a high percentage of Awori, who migrated to the area from Isheri along the Ogun river. Throughout history, it was home to a number of warring ethnic groups who had settled in the area. During its early settlement, it also saw periods of rule by the Benin Kingdom.
Portuguese explorer Rui de Sequeira visited the area in 1472, naming the area around the city Lago de Curamo; indeed the present name is Portuguese for "lakes". Another explanation is that Lagos was named for Lagos, Portugal - a maritime town which, at the time, was the main centre of Portuguese expeditions down the African coast, and whose own name is derived from the Latin word Lacobriga.
Lagos was formally annexed as the British Lagos Colony in 1861. This had the dual effect of crushing the slave trade and establishing British control over palm and other trades. The remainder of modern-day Nigeria was seized in 1887, and when the Colony and Protectorate of Nigeria was established in 1914, Lagos was declared its capital, continuing as such after the country's independence from Britain in 1960. Along with migrants from all over Nigeria and other West African nations were the returnee ex-slaves known as Creoles, who came from Freetown, Sierra Leone, Brazil and the West Indies to Lagos. The Creoles contributed to Lagos' modernisation and their knowledge of Portuguese architecture can still be seen from the architecture on Lagos Island.
Lagos experienced rapid growth throughout the 1960s and 1970s as a result of Nigeria's economic boom prior to the Nigerian Civil War otherwise called the Biafran War. Lagos was the capital of Nigeria from 1914 up to 1991. The city was stripped of its status when the Federal Capital Territory was established at the purpose-built city of Abuja. On November 14, 1991, the Presidency and other federal government functions were finally relocated to the new capital city of Abuja.
 Lagos Mainland
Most of the population live on the mainland, and most industries are located there too. Lagos is known for its music and night life, which used to be located in areas around Yaba and Surulere In recent years more night clubs have sprung on the island, making the island, particularly Victoria Island, the main nightlife attraction. Lagos Mainland districts include Ebute-Meta, Surulere, Yaba (location of the University of Lagos) and Ikeja, site of Murtala Muhammed International Airport and capital of Lagos State.
Greater Lagos includes Mushin, Maryland, Somolu, Oshodi, Oworonsoki, Isolo, Ikotun, Agege,Iju Ishaga, Egbeda, Ketu, Bariga, Ipaja, Ajah and Ejigbo.
The city of Lagos is the main city of the southwestern part of Nigeria. Some rivers, like Badagry Creek, flow parallel to the coast for some distance before exiting through the sand bars to the sea. The two major urban islands of Lagos in Lagos Lagoon are Lagos Island and Victoria Island. These islands are separated from the mainland by the main channel draining the lagoon into the Atlantic Ocean, which forms Lagos Harbour. The islands are separated from each other by creeks of varying sizes and are connected to Lagos Island by bridges. The smaller sections of some creeks have been sand filled and built over, however.
 Islands of Lagos
 Lagos Island
Main article: Lagos Island Lagos Island as seen from the harbour near Victoria Island Lagos Island contains a central business district. This district is characterized by high-rise buildings. The island also contains many of the city's largest wholesale marketplaces (such as the popular Idumota and Balogun markets). It also has the National Museum of Nigeria, the Central Mosque, the Glover Memorial Hall, Christ's Cathedral (CMS), and the Oba Palace. Though formerly in a derelict condition, Lagos Island's Tinubu Square is a site of historical importance; it was here that the Amalgamation Ceremony that unified the North and South protectorate to form Nigeria took place in 1914.
Main article: Ikoyi Ikoyi is situated on the eastern half of Lagos Island and joined to it by a landfill. Ikoyi is also connected to Victoria Island by a bridge carrying a main road over a Five Cowrie creek. Ikoyi housed the headquarter of the federal government of Nigeria and other buildings owned by the government -including the old federal secretariat complex. The complex today is on reestablishment. In Ikoyi there are military and police barracks, a top-security prison and a federal high court of Nigeria. Ikoyi also has a number of hotels, night clubs, a recreational park and one of Africa's largest golf courses. Originally a middle class neighbourhood, in recent years, it has become a fashionable residential enclave for the upper middle class to the upper class. There are also commercial activities in Ikoyi which is spotted in increasing number of offices, banks and shopping complexes. The commercial sections is concentrated in the South-West,SW.
 Victoria Island
Main article: Victoria Island (Nigeria) Victoria Island with its annex is situated to the south of Lagos Island. It has expensive real estate properties and for that reason, many new luxury condos and apartments are blooming up everywhere. Along with Ikoyi, Victoria Island occupies a major area in the suburbs of Lagos which boasts of several sizable shopping districts. On its sea shore along the Atlantic front, there is environmentally reconstructed Bar Beach.
Across the main channel of the lagoon from Lagos Island, there is a smaller settlement called Iddo. Iddo is also a railroad terminus and it is situated on the mainland. It is now connected to the mainland like a peninsula.
Three major bridges join the island to the mainland. They are the Carter Bridge which start from Iddo, the Eko Bridge(formerly called the Second Mainland Bridge) and the Third Mainland Bridge -which passes through densely populated mainland suburbs through Lagos lagoon.
Lagos has a tropical savanna climate (Köppen climate classification Aw) that is similar to that of the rest of southern Nigeria. There are two rainy seasons, with the heaviest rains falling from April to July and a weaker rainy season in October and November. There is a brief relatively dry spell in August and September and a longer dry season from December to March. Monthly rainfall between May and July averages over 400 mm (15.7 in), while in August and September it is down to 200 mm (7.9 in) and in December as low as 25 mm (1.0 in). The main dry season is accompanied by harmattan winds from the Sahara Desert, which between December and early February can be quite strong.
|[hide]Climate data for Lagos|
|Average high °C (°F)||31 |
|Average low °C (°F)||23 |
|Precipitation mm (inches)||28 |
|Avg. rainy days||2||3||7||10||16||20||16||10||14||16||7||2||123|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||186||196||186||180||186||120||93||93||90||155||210||217||1,912|
Shopping in Lagos Lagos is Nigeria's most prosperous city, and much of the nation's wealth and economic activity are concentrated here. Most commercial and financial business is carried out in the central business district situated on the island. This is also where most of the country's commercial banks and financial institutions and major corporations are headquartered. Lagos has one of the highest standards of living as compared to other cities in Nigeria as well as in Africa.
The Port of Lagos is Nigeria's leading port and one of the largest and busiest in Africa. It is administered by the Nigerian Ports Authority and it is split into three main sections: Lagos port, in the main channel next to Lagos Island, Apapa Port (site of the container terminal) and Tin Can Port, both located in Badagry Creek, which flows into Lagos Harbour from the west. The port features a railhead.
The port has seen growing amounts of crude oil exported, with export figures rising between 1997 and 2000. Oil and petroleum products provide 14% of GDP and 90% of foreign exchange earnings in Nigeria as a whole.
Lagos has one of the largest and most extensive road networks in West Africa. It also has suburban trains and some ferry services. Highways are usually congested in peak hours, due in part to the geography of the city, as well as to its explosive population growth. Lagos is also linked by many highways and bridges.
Third Mainland Bridge The Lagos–Ibadan Expressway and the Lagos–Abeokuta Expressway are the major controlled-access highways in the north of the city and serve as inter-state highways to Oyo State and Ogun State respectively. To the west the congested Lagos–Badagry Expressway serves outlying towns such as Festival Town, which was the location for the 1977 Festival of Black Arts and Culture 77.
Lagos's importance as a commercial centre and port and its strategic location have led to it being the end-point of three Trans-African Highway routes using Nigeria's national roads: The Trans–West African Coastal Highwayleaves the city as the Badagry Expressway to Benin and beyond as far as Dakar and Nouakchott; The Trans-Sahara Highway to Algiers, which is close to completion, leaves the city as the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.
Lagos State recently implemented a bus rapid transit (BRT) system; the first phase was completed in February 2008. It is expected to operate along eight routes using specially designated bus rapid transit lanes running through the city, with the aim of expanding to other routes in the future. The first phase of the Lagos BRT runs 12 miles through Ikorodu Road and Funsho Williams Avenue up to CMS. After weeks of test runs, operations started on March 17, 2008, six months earlier than planned.
It has been estimated that the system will transport about 10,000 passengers in each direction per hour during peak travel times. The LAMATA bus rapid transit corridor covers a distance of about 22 kilometres in length. The system is run by two operators, NURTW Cooperative (Nigerian Union of Road Transport Workers) and Lagbus, a Lagos State Government owned Asset Management Company which contributes about 180 high capacity buses for the implementation of the first phase Mile 12 to CMS BRT Lite system.
Main article: Lagos Light Rail A planned extensive urban rail system running through the Lagos metropolis.
Lagos State Ferry Services Corporation runs a few regular routes, for example between Lagos Island and the mainland, modern ferries and wharves. Private boats run irregular passenger services on the lagoon and on some creeks.
Murtala Muhammed International Airport Lagos is served by Murtala Muhammed International Airport, one of the largest airports in Africa and a top international air passenger gateway to Nigeria. The airport is located in the northern suburb of Ikeja and has Domestic and International Terminals. With 5.1 million passengers in 2008, the airport accounts for almost fifty percent of all air traffic in Nigeria. Outbound international travel from Murtala Mohammed Airport accounts for the majority of all air passengers traveling to and from Nigeria. The airport has recently undergone upgrades along with the addition of a new terminal.
 Music and film industry
Lagos is famous throughout Africa for its music scene. Lagos has given birth to a variety of styles such as the Nigerian-styled Hip hop (Nigerian hip hop), Highlife, Juju, Fuji, and Afrobeat.
Lagos is the center of the Nigerian movie industry, often referred to as 'Nollywood.' Idumota market on Lagos Island is the primary distribution center. Many films are shot in the Festac area of Lagos.
National Arts Theatre The cinemas are gradually losing their supporters to the movie industry. Yoruba language films happen to be the most watched in the cinemas, followed by Indian films. Films are not premiered for a long period of time in the western sense, especially with Yoruba language films. Films in English are controlled mainly by the Igbos are the most popular and move directly from the studios to the market.
Iganmu is home to the primary centre for the performing arts and artistes in Nigeria: the National Arts Theatre .
Paul McCartney also recorded his third post-beatle album, Band On The Run in an EMI studio in Lagos in August to September 1973.
As in other major cities of the world, football is Lagos' most popular sport. Prominent Lagos football clubs include Julius Berger FC, First Bank and Stationery Stores.
The Nigeria national football team, also known as the Super Eagles, used to play almost all of their home games in Lagos at the National Stadium in Surulere; however, games are now mostly played at the larger and newer Abuja National Stadium in Abuja, which is the default home of the Super Eagles.
Lagos, subsequently to the re-modernization project achieved by the current administration of Governor Raji Babatunde Fashola, is gradually becoming a major tourist destination, being one of the largest cities in Africa and in the world. Lagos is currently taking steps to become a global city. The 2009 Eyo carnival (a yearly festival originated from Iperu Remo, Ogun State) which took place on April 25, was a step toward world city status. Currently, Lagos is primarily known as a business-oriented and a fast paced community. Lagos has a number of sandy beaches by the Atlantic Ocean. Two of the popular beaches include Bar Beach and Lekki Beach. Lagos has a variety of hotels ranging from three star to five star hotels.
Some of the popular hotels include Welcome Centre Hotels, Sheraton Hotel and Towers, Federal Palace Hotel, Stop Over Motels, Ikoyi Hotel, Sofitel Lagos Moorhouse Ikoyi, Eko Hotels And Suites, and The Palmview Manor. Visitors are mostly attracted to Nigeria's rich culture, entertainment scenes and vitality which Lagos city offers. Tourist attractions include Oba's Palace, the Nigerian National Museum, Shrine of Fela, the beach resorts.