Can we change our commuting habits?

  • 3 August 2011
  • From the section London
  • comments

Here's the full interview I've just done with the Transport Minister Norman Baker, who is urging Londoners to re-think their routine during the Games to alleviate the pressure on the transport system.

I asked for some questions over Twitter - thank you for all of your suggestions - I asked as many as I could given the time constraints.

It does seem the Department for Transport (DfT) is unlikely to shift support from the existing Olympic transport plan and is very confident that it will work.

That goes for proposed changes to Southeastern's timetable at Greenwich during the Games and the controversial Games Lanes.

I asked Southeastern about the proposed changes for the Olympics and this was its reply:

"With the Olympic timetable we have undertaken a consultation jointly with the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA), which provides the specification for the timetable we have to run as part of the franchise agreement during the Olympics.

"That has closed and we have looked at making some changes, including re-introducing the services at Charlton and also running the Javelin train to Ashford later into the night.

"We have the timetables on our website.

"The services to the Olympic venue stations are unaffected, Greenwich, Woolwich Arsenal, Blackheath and Charlton for example. But to make sure there is enough time to get people on and off the train we have had to reduce the services at some of the stations further down the line. It is the only safe way of doing it with so many people travelling.

"There are, of course, alternatives for the train, bus, underground and DLR etc and we are working with them as well on this. We are still awaiting the approval from the DfT so all is still in the air."

I've again looked at the modelling and it does show that at some stations such as London Bridge, organisers need a 50% drop in "background" commuters.

Also, in the long term Norman Baker wants companies to get out of the rush-hour mindset and thinks 2012 could be the catalyst.

Let me know what you think.

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