As everyone struggles to pay bills and keep a roof over their heads in the current economic climate we get some heartening news.
Cable car moves closer
Work will start this summer on a cable car across the Thames helping to boost the on-going regeneration of east London.
This follows the appointment of a world-class consortium to build and operate the cable car with Mace as lead contractor.
The cable car will span the Thames, providing a low-emission, quick, direct and fully accessible link connecting the Greenwich Peninsula and the O2 with the Royal Victoria Docks and the ExCeL. It will provide a spectacular architectural addition to London and a much needed river crossing in this area, cutting travel times to five minutes. It will also boost the once-in-a-lifetime economic regeneration of east London, forming an essential new addition to a newly created Enterprise Zone. This supports the Mayor's vision to transform this area into a new metropolitan quarter boasting new businesses, tourist attractions, homes and job opportunities.
Mace has a strong track record of delivering innovative projects including the London Eye, the company is currently constructing the Shard Tower in London and is involved in a consortium to deliver the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Stadium. Mace has been selected as lead contractor to build the cable car and operate it for three years. Mace will lead a consortium of experts, including the cable car specialists, Dopplemayr, and Watson Steel, URS Scott Wilson, Buro Happold and Aedas. The cable car has been designed to the highest standards by Wilkinson Eyre.
Work will start on the ground this summer on what is set to be the first urban system of its kind in the UK. TfL is striving to deliver the scheme before the London Olympic and Paralympic Games although this remains an extremely challenging timeline for a complex project.
TfL also announced the start of a competitive process for commercial partners who want to invest in the scheme in return for the rights to associated commercial sponsorship opportunities, including naming rights and branding options. The commercial programme will be a key component of a funding package for the cable car which will also include third party grants and surplus fare revenue. It will also provide a full and transparent process. The winning bidder is expected to be announced later this year. In the interim, to aid the quick delivery of this important new transport link TfL will provide upfront funding for the cable car. TfL will recoup its costs from a range of sources including the appointed commercial partner, fare revenue and sponsorship.
When up and running the cable car will be a spectacular addition to the London skyline and become an internationally recognisable landmark. The cable car will also serve some of London’s key destinations including the ExCeL centre, London’s largest exhibition centre, the O2, the world’s most popular music arena, and London City Airport. Similar to the support provided by the DLR and Jubilee line to the transformation of Canary Wharf, the cable car will boost this planned revitalisation of the Royal Docks. It is close to London City Airport and will complement the planned £15 billion Crossrail project later this decade which will connect Heathrow to the West End, The City, Canary Wharf and east London.
So perhaps the recession was an April fools joke thats gone on two years too long or perhaps it could be that were just getting screwed in the pursuit of profit for the few.