Thames Cable Car Is Now Opened to the Citizens in London (UK)

From the 28 June, citizens and guests of London are able to enjoy a new and rather unconventional public transport ride. 90 meters above the Thames, The Emirates Air Line – London’s first cable car, offers spectacular views over the capital, including on key Olympic venues.

Although this sounds as a tourist attraction arriving just before the opening of the Olympic Games, the new cable car facility is said to have a practical implications for the city's transport infrastructure. It has the capacity of transporting 2500 passengers an hour over the Thames, and travelling the distance from O2 Arena in Greenwich to the ExCel exhibition center, for as quickly as 5 minutes in peak hours.

The UK’s first urban cable car has 34 cabins, each one with a capacity for 10 people. The price which visitors will pay for a single ride is £4.30, and £3.20 with a pay-as-you-go Oyster card, while further reductions are available for round trip and for passengers with “frequent flyer” pass. The cabins will circulate from 7:00 until 21:00 on week days and from 8:00 and 9:00 on Saturday and Sunday respectively.

The total cost of the project is now estimated at about £60m, and its major sponsor, as the name reveals, is the Emirates airline, covering £36m of the costs over 10 years. The significance of this investment is also visible from the logo of the project, which makes reference both to the London Underground sign and the logo of the Dubai-based airline. Apart from private financing, the project uses also resources from the Transport for London (TfL) budget, and £8m funding from the European Regional Development Fund. Renting of retail area and fare revenues are also expected to help recoup the costs for the capital’s new acquisition.