Olympic Families…

Now here’s a cosy concept. The Olympic ‘family.’ This is the nausea-inducing title given to the group of ‘clients’ that the Olympic Delivery Authority actually care about for 2012. They include National Olympic Committee officials, athletes, workforce, media and, most tellingly, ‘marketing partners’ – i.e. advertisers. The Paralympic ‘family’ has similar categories.

So why am I writing about this today? Because on the 23rd, the ODA produced the transport plans for 2012. We’re all going to go by public transport. No ifs. No buts. Unless we can manage to join The Family…

So what will The Family enjoy that we can only stand in our queues and watch?

Well, traffic lights will be rephased so that traffic going to the games gets priority and where necessary roads will be closed. Routes will be diverted and ‘kerbside controls’ (Parking restrictions) brought in. Special ‘Olympic’ lanes created for more than 1000, officials who will be entitled to their own car and driver. For us this will mainly mean that the Blackwall Tunnel will be down to one lane because most of the roads in Greenwich won’t support a separate lane.

The ODA are, at least, good enough to accept that the most important sub-category of The Family is the athletes. Fair enough. It would be most annoying if the race began and the runners were all stuck on the Northern Line. But after that I start to wonder just how many of these dignitaries really justify a dedicated lane in already-congested roads. The rest of us are expected to leave time for our journeys – which will be worse because The Family are taking up an entire lane. I like the way they put things: that less than 50 percent of the ORN (Olympic Road Network) will be affected – a good news-way of telling us that nearly half of our roads will be fiddled with.

Do I ultimately care? Probably not that much for the total of four weeks during the two sets of games. But I will not be happy if it is extended for months before and after the festivities because the building work is going at its usual Olympic speed (late) creating designated lanes for JCBs…

What do you folks think?

http://www.london2012.com/plans/transport/getting-ready/transport-plan.php

The Phantom lights the blue touch-paper and retires…


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