International
Federation for
Housing and
Planning

A new form of urban transport

The IFHP Travel Squad reports from London: The time might be right for new forms of urban transportation.

The cable car from Greenwich Peninsula across the Themes to Royal Victoria Dock, is a ‘state of the art’ project that puts in place a well know transport system in a very different urban setting. Sponsored by the Emirates Air Line the cable car connection has already carried over a million passengers between Greenwich in South to the Docklands in North East, which marks one of the entrance to the former Olympic site, which is now undergoing a major transformation.

The best connected place in London
Within the next 10-20 years the Eastern part of London, including the International Quarter, Stratford City, The Canary Wharf and the London Borough of Newham, will turn into a new lively mixed use area. And the cable car is just one of several ways to connect with this part of the city. In fact, East London that used to be the city’s underdeveloped, waste zone is today by far the best connected place in London. The cable car system is the first of its kind in the UK and demonstrate the possibilities of cable cars we normally only see in mountain resorts as an additional and very efficient form of urban transport.

The physical manifestation of a sustainable cities initiative
The cable car runs from the Millennium Stadium in Greenwich Peninsula in south to Siemens’ Crystal at the Royal Victoria Dock in Newham. The Crystal is the physical manifestation of a sustainable cities initiative that explores how we can create a better and more sustainable future for our cities. It is home to the world’s largest interactive exhibition focused on urban sustainability – bringing together people, city decision-makers, and planners. Logistically, the site Siemens chosen for the Crystal is the bridgehead between Canary Warf, ExCel, City Airport, Stratford and the major former Olympic Games development site.

By and to the people
Symbolically, The Crystal is the first new development completed at the Royal Dock world enterprise business zone. The Emirates cable car the Siemens centre represent two string and very powerful signals that Newham and East London are up for a new dynamic that merges the knowledge and innovation economy, the next generation of technology with urban development and place-making by and to the people.

See also
>> Is the skyline being screwed? (blog)
>> The IFHP Travel Squad reports from London (news)
>> IFHP Centenary Congress 2013, 08-11 June 2013 (event)