TfL says cable car users are happy despite criticism


Boris Johnson's cable car has come under criticism for low passenger numbers but at least those using the service are apparently happy.

The Emirates Air Line has secured a customer satisfaction rating of 93 out of 100 for its first nine months of service - a period in which it carried two million people.

Speaking about the results, Transport for London's Danny Price, who is in charge of the Emirates Air Line, said: "The positive results from the customer satisfaction survey and local businesses show it is supporting regeneration and playing a vital role in attracting investment to the area."

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However, critics, who have consistently complained the link is merely a tourist attraction, say despite satisfaction levels the cable car is failing in its objective to be a key part of the London transport system.

Usage figures have been as low as 15,000 in recent weeks.

Liberal Democrats leader at London Assembly Caroline Pidgeon said: "If Transport for London really want to help businesses and ensure more people use the cable car to get to work each day they must ensure it operates like an integral form of public transport.

"A good start would be to ensure that people with a relevant Travelcard are not charged again for using a publicly funded transport scheme."

TfL has argued passenger numbers are in line with expectation and that it is sure it will see figures increase in the coming years as the areas at each end develop. This includes a 452 room hotel at the Greenwich Peninsula, due to be completed in 2015.

Firms such as The O2, as well as Siemens, which runs The Crystal in the Royal Docks, spoke out in defence of the link.

Director of Communications at the O2, Jeremy King, said: "The Emirates Air Line provides a great way for our visitors to get to The O2 and it has played a huge role in attracting domestic and international visitors to the local area, which in turn has driven more people to The O2.

"It is a great addition to Greenwich and the transport network."

Meanwhile, Anne Keogh, head of external relations at Siemens said some of the company's employees commute to work at The Crystal by the Emirates Air Line.

"It is an innovative addition to the Royal Docks and an exciting, low-carbon way to cross the river," she said.


Kenny Thornton said:

If the prices weren't so high maybe it would compete with the likes of the alternative route (Tube - North Greenwich-Canning Town and DLR - Canning Town-Royal Victoria).

Working by the cable car station, it only seems busy at weekends and during this recent Easter Holidsy, that's it!

john said:

I agree the price puts people off using it as a proper form of transport.

When did TFL get permission to spend public money on running a tourist attraction.

All the advertising for this service is squarely aimed at tourists and not commuters.

Its competion is the london eye etc. its surprising that TFL is allowed to go into this market place as public funded.

The proposed floating village under it at excel is to bring crowds of tourists to the area, its not like there isn't loads of undeveloped land in the area already.