Mayor Boris’s legacy starts to loom over Greenwich


You could see it over Greenwich on Thursday morning – above the buildings, a feature in the sky that wasn’t there on Wednesday morning.

The cable car tower? No, the band of smog that produced London’s worst pollution for four years. Boris Johnson is keen to leave his mark on London – well, it looks like we’ve got it from a mayor that’s eroded the congestion charge, planning to build more roads (including one on our doorstep) and failed to take action against gas-guzzlers. Nice one, Boris.

That’ll make the views from the cable car all the more bracing, won’t it? Despite the grotty weather predicted for Saturday, a helicopter’s due to string the cable itself across the Thames this weekend, a week later than planned. If you look closely at the south side station, a gondola is already in place.

Across town, work is starting on Crossrail. There’s some great graphics on the BBC’s story about this, including a telling map which show just how close the Greenwich peninsula got to having a second proper transport link to add to the already-rammed Jubilee Line.

To be fair, about 10 years ago Greenwich Council did press unsuccessfully for Crossrail to be routed via Charlton instead of the Royal Docks. It would have been a cheaper option, and if it’d got its way, this area would have been transformed within this decade.

But even then, if Crossrail looped a little bit further south, instead of looping a little bit further north, North Greenwich could have had an amazing transport interchange that’d have removed any possible need for a gimmicky cable car to somewhere few people aim for to be dressed up as a transport improvement.

So near, yet so far…

7 comments

  1. Sacha

    And still nothing on the Woolwich Crossrail station fit out, which would help the borough in so many ways

  2. Darryl

    Well, it’ll help Woolwich, anyway. But wasn’t Greenwich Council in charge of raising the cash for that?

    Sounds like a question someone should put to the next council meeting.

  3. Otter

    PLA Notice to Mariners no13 of 2012 apologises for yet more delay: it’s going to be weekend 24/25 March for the cable stringing.

  4. Sacha

    I’ll argue the effect will be massive for the whole borough if Woolwich is fitted out, for Plumstead, Charlton, parts of Eltham, where the majority of the population live.

    I certainly will ask the question.

  5. Pingback: At the Guardian: Boris, Ken, and a wasteland in Charlton « 853
  6. Otter

    PLA Notice to Mariners no17 of 2012: cable stringing put off again; date to be announced. Distinct signs of exasperation in the wording of this one.

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