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Traffic for London are creating an Olympian gridlock says entrepreneur on Wed 11th July, 2012
aspect.co.uk maintain a fleet of vehicles on the capital’s roads so that their electrical, heating, plumbing and roofing engineers can attend the 100’s of domestic and business repair calls that the company receives every day.
As such, they are ideally placed to judge the suitability of Transport for London’s (TFL) contingency plans for the Olympic (27 July - 12 Aug) and Paralympic Games (29 Aug - 9 Sept).
“We have briefed special staff to maintain links with TFL and we have attended several seminars but to be honest their planning and website updates are so convoluted that we have ended up producing our own,” said Mr Davies.
“Companies like ours must be able to access restricted areas to undertake maintenance work in restaurants, shops and so forth and while they have said permits will be issued they have given us no information on how to obtain them and keep saying that it will be released soon!” he said.
aspect.co.uk is so disgusted by TFL provision of information that they have created an information centre for their customers.
They have pooled the relevant information from many websites into a page on their own website www.aspect.co.uk/olympictraffic and the site will also display live Twitter feeds from aspect.co.uk’s engineers as they travel London’s roads. They have also circulated a document to all their customers letting them know how the Olympics are likely to affect them and how to deal with it.
“TFL’s provision has been so awful that we want to provide our customers, and any members of the public who want to visit our site, with reliable information,” said Mr Davies.
aspect.co.uk will be maintaining their network of engineers throughout the games by employing drivers so that vehicles do not have to be parked in congested streets.
“It is obviously a considerable extra expense but we will have to bite the bullet to maintain our 24 hour coverage,” said Mr Davies – who was an investment banker before creating aspect.co.uk.
TFL themselves are predicting that tube passengers can expect 30 minute delays before they board trains at peak times – an estimate that many commentators describe as ‘optimistic’.
TFL are calling for a 30% reduction in normal ‘habitual peak commuters’ to ease congestion. They hope that this can be achieved by employers encouraging home working and flexibility in hours.
This message doesn’t seem to have reached the London Mayor Boris Johnson who said: "I don't want to see the Olympics turned into a bludgers' or skivers' paradise. You should expect your staff to turn up. It is going to be possible to get to work but it's not going to be perfect. This is not a glorified sicknote for the whole of London."
John Price, Hillgrove PR.
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