London sends Rio top transport tips
07:32 27 February 2013
Tips on how to make the transport system work smoothly during a major sporting event have been sent by London officials to Rio de Janeiro, the next hosts of the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
The advice was sent in a letter from London Assembly transport committee chairman Caroline Pidgeon to the Brazilian ambassador to Britain, Roberto Jaguaribe.
Ms Pidgeon’s letter says that more than 40 transport organisations were involved in running the network during London 2012 so getting the operators to work closely together before and during the Games was vital.
The document details the results of the committee’s investigation into the transport operation for the London 2012 Games.
Other advice includes making sure there are extensive, detailed plans and testing them well in advance, and encouraging commuters to change their usual travel plans and learning any lessons from big events held in the run-up to the Games.
Transport operators were held to account after rail and Tube delays hit the busy Diamond Jubilee weekend so the problems could be sorted in time for the Games, the committee said.
In her letter Ms Pidgeon says the challenges Rio faces in the run-up to the 2016 Games are “dramatically different” to London’s.
Fears had been strong that the network might not be able to cope with record-breaking passenger numbers. This included a 30 per cent increase to 60million passengers on the Tube, more than six million journeys on the Docklands Light Railway and nearly six million trips on the London Overground, a 47 per cent increase on normal levels, the committee found.
Ms Pidgeon adds: “The lessons from London 2012 could help the city to cope with the pressure of additional visitors, deliver athletes to events swiftly, allow residents to get to work - all while ensuring that the transport network during Rio 2016 runs smoothly.”
The task now for London is ensuring the efficient transport network during the 2012 Games is not “just an exceptional, one-off achievement only beneficial over the Olympic summer”, Ms Pidgeon said.
She said: “We must now make sure the £7.2billion invested in transport allows London to gain its own Olympic legacy.
“Smooth-running, reliable public transport, better passenger information and accessibility for all must be the daily norm for passengers.
“Moving forward, lessons learnt could also potentially lead to the Tube running later at night and better transport co-ordination for future events held in the capital.”