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London-wide + Greenwich stories

Mayor needs to answer key questions over cable car proposals

Caroline Pidgeon, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on the Mayor’s announcement of a lead contractor to construct London’s cable car, said:

“A cable car crossing the Thames is a great idea, but it is a great idea being let down by poor financial planning and a lack of openness.

“The Mayor must now come clean and state why as recently as July 2010 he was claiming the cable car would cost £25 million, but already its projected cost has doubled.

Late night riverboat returns

Last Autumn saw the dreadful news that the late night service on the Clipper service was being removed from the winter timetable.

The good news is that following an excellent campaign run by commuters, Southwark Liberal Democrat Councillors and Caroline (read more on Caroline's site here and here) an evening service has now returned, starting from the 1st April.

Caroline Pidgeon slams Greenwich Foot Tunnel fiasco

Caroline Pidgeon, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group and Vice Chair of the London Assembly Transport Committee, commenting on the recent admission by Greenwich Council that Greenwich Foot Tunnel will now only be fully open 24 hours a day from some time in June, said:

"The 1.5 million people who use the Greenwich Foot Tunnel every year have been totally let down by Greenwich Council.

Oyster overcharging at a station near you

Passengers are being overcharged more than £1 million a week when using Oyster, with overcharging occurring at every tube and train station across the capital, new figures obtained by Caroline Pidgeon, the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group leader, have revealed.

The top ten stations where passengers were ripped off last year were:

Waterloo National Rail £2,452,000
London Bridge National Rail £2,300,000
Liverpool Street National Rail £1,615,000

Mayor cannot ignore disturbing rise in bus crime

Caroline Pidgeon, leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on the Mayor’s announcement today about crime statistics on public transport and his claim to be providing extra policing on to the transport network said:

“The Mayor should take great care when boasting about crime statistics on London’s transport network, especially as the overall fall in crime seems to hide some very disturbing rises in bus crime in about a third of London boroughs.

Greenwich Foot Tunnel closed without warning

The local 853 blog has an an article on the sudden closure by Greenwich Council of the foot tunnel to the Isle of Dogs.

The blog quotes Caroline Pidgeon's letter expressing her concern to the leader of Greenwich Council:

The foot tunnel is an absolutely key component in the London cycle and pedestrian network… the closure of the tunnel has a significant effect on people’s ability to cross the river.

Many people are angry that the tunnel has been closed with no warning because this often compels people to use more dangerous routes, such as the Rotherhithe Tunnel, and gives people no time or warning to plan alternative, safer routes to their destination.

Mayor should honour his pledge to deliver a better train service for Londoners

Caroline Pidgeon, leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, today called on the Mayor of London to look at whether Transport for London could take over the running of certain rail routes serving Londoners.

Following her questioning of the Mayor at City Hall she said:

“There is a chasm between what the Mayor promised train commuters before he was elected and the harsh reality facing so many commuters each and every day.

City Airport’s expansion means increased misery for many more Londoners

Caroline Pidgeon, Leader of the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Group, commenting on today’s Judicial Review decision upholding Newham Council’s decision to significantly expand London City Airport said:

"Many people in east and south east London are already facing serious problems with noise and disturbance from air flights. Today's decision provides the green light to increased misery for many more Londoners.

Olympic transport will not be as easy as the organisers hope

The Telegraph covers the advice by the 2012 Olympics organising committee that commuters should stay at home and avoid public transport during the Games, despite polls showing that 80% of Londoners plan to be in the city as normal.

Caroline Pidgeon comments:

Instead of relying on many commuters staying at home or avoiding London we need assurance that plans are in place and the transport network will be able to cope to prevent gridlock across the capital.

I fear travel will not be as easy as they hope.

You can read the full article here.

Mayor's pet cable car project may suck in public money

The BBC reports that a planned cable car across the Thames from Docklands to North Greenwich may not be ready in time for the Olympics - and that the Mayor is now requesting public funding for it.

Caroline Pidgeon commented:

A cable car crossing the Thames might well be a great idea, but the bottom line is that the mayor promised Londoners that it would be funded entirely from private finance and that has already turned out to not be the case.

The mayor now needs to give a clear account of why he rejected the views of the board of the London Development Agency and forced them to divert public funding into his pet project.

You can read the BBC's full story here.

The story has also been covered by the Evening Standard and the Docklands24 website.

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