The Olympics

The Olympics


News, information and stories about the Olympics.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Cars Banned From Capital

In a move that attempts to emulate the Chinese Olympics anti pollution drive, and one that is bound to annoy a few people, London Olympics organisers (ODA) have proposed banning cars from the capital during the 2012 London Olympics.

The ODA are calling for a "cultural shift" in the way that people use transport.

The ODA has set a ludicrously ambitious target of 100% of spectators travelling to the Olympic Park in Stratford by public transport, walking and cycling.

An ODA spokesman said:

"We're not banning people from driving during the Games. The point is really encouraging people to use public transport."

Quite a ridiculous contradiction, if they are not banning people from using cars then there will be a significant percentage that will use cars; hence the 100% target is absurd.

Not very surprisingly not everyone will be expected to abandon their cars. Dignitaries, officials from the International Olympic Committee and sponsors will be able to drive in special Olympic lanes during the Games. The "ban" just applies to the ordinary public.

How very egalitarian!

Needless to say the main obstacle to this "plan" is the fact that London's public transport system is falling apart. For example, the Circle line has to be closed during the weekends for urgent repairs. The impression that this gives to tourists and visitors to London is that of a third world country, rather than a leading capital city.

Quite how London ever convinced the IOC that it has an adequate public transport infrastructure is beyond belief.

Others are not particularly convinced about the ODA's vision either, earlier this year the Commons transport select committee published a report criticising the ODA's draft Olympic travel plan for "not exhibiting any sense of urgency" and being "vague".

The ODA are clearly living in fantasy land.

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