This paper sets out the Government's response to
the Transport Committee's report "Going for Gold: Transport
for London's 2012 Olympic Games" (HC 588-1 published on 16
March 2006). In preparing this response, we have worked closely
with the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) and the London Organising
Committee for the Olympic Games (LOCOG). This response also therefore
reflects their views.
The Government, the ODA and LOCOG welcome the publication
of this report and the Committee's continued scrutiny of the preparations
for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The Government shares
the Committee's view that the Games will be good for London and
welcomes the praise for the planning and work undertaken so far.
The Government also acknowledges that ensuring that London's transport
infrastructure is able to meet the challenge presented by the
Olympics will require considerable effort.
The transport plans for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic
Games, as set out in the Candidature File submitted to the International
Olympic Committee (IOC) and refined subsequently, were the culmination
of 2 ½ years of work.
In developing these plans, the bid team looked closely
at the experience of previous Olympic host cities and sought the
advice of those involved in organising previous games. As a result
the Government is confident that the London Games will have excellent
transport which not only delivers for the Games themselves but
also leaves a valuable legacy for years after.
Since the Games were awarded to London there have
already been significant steps towards turning these plans into
- The London Olympic Games and
Paralympic Games Bill has received Royal Assent, formally creating
the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA);
- The ODA Chairman and Chief Executive have been
appointed, and the ODA Board has been announced and met for the
first time on 27 April.
- The Docklands Light Railway (DLR) extension to
City Airport opened on time and on budget in December 2005;
- Tunnelling has commenced on the next extension
of the DLR to Woolwich Arsenal;
- Detailed design work for improvements to Stratford
Regional Station has commenced;
- The Jubilee line 7th car upgrade was delivered
on time, increasing capacity by 17%
- The first of the shafts to put underground the
power lines running through the Lea Valley has reached a depth
of 30 metres, and construction of the 6km tunnels will begin soon.
The Government's responses to the individual conclusions
and recommendations of the Committee are set out below. Some of
the recommendations and conclusions fall outside of the Government's
remit. Where this is the case, the ODA and LOCOG have provided
We have grouped issues where they are linked.
Response to Conclusions and Recommendations
1. The aim of this inquiry was to identify at
an early stage emerging problems and areas of concern in Olympic
transport planning. It is relatively early in the process of preparing
for London's Games, and we did not therefore expect to find final
delivery structures in place and fully operational. We did however
wish to satisfy ourselves that planning for the Games was as far
advanced as possible. What we have found is set out in detail
in the following paragraphs.
The Government welcomes the Committee's interest
in Olympic transport and its focus upon planning. The Government
shares the Committee's belief that it is important to advance
planning for the Games as far as possible at an early stage.
2. It is obvious that without excellent transport
the Olympic and Paralympic Games will be at risk of failure. London's
reputation as a leading world city will depend largely upon its
ability to ensure that appropriate transport infrastructure is
in place for the Olympic and Paralympic Games by 2012. The Government
and the Mayor of London are the ultimate guarantors of the Games,
including essential transport improvements and provision. We expect
them to see that these are delivered to specification and to time.
61.The 2012 Olympic Games will be good for London.
The hard work must now start to ensure that transport for the
Games is fully adequate for competitors, officials and visitors.
Transport is the key to a successful Olympic Games. It cannot
be allowed to fail.
Transport infrastructure is central to the delivery
of the Olympic and Paralympic Games. This is why we have set out
clearly how transport will be delivered. Our plans are underpinned
by the investment and improvements which are already being made
to London's transport infrastructure and would have been in place
by 2012 regardless of the Games.
In order to ensure that our transport plans are deliverable
- Based our plans around London's
extensive existing transport network, and the improvements which
were planned for before 2012, regardless of the Olympic and Paralympic
- Ensured that the transport plans are fully funded
and, in most cases, are already under construction.
- Agreed a long term funding settlement with the
Mayor, giving the certainty needed for long term investment in
London's transport infrastructure. This has enabled Transport
for London (TfL) to take forward its 5 year £10 billion investment
strategy, which includes a number of major schemes in support
of London's Olympic plans and the redevelopment of the Thames
Construction is already underway on a number of the
transport infrastructure projects needed in time for the 2012
Games. This includes the Channel Tunnel Rail Link (CTRL), which
will open in 2007, the DLR extension to Woolwich and the DLR capacity
3. The Olympic transport budget will be a matter
for the Olympic Delivery Authority and the successors of Interim
Olympic transport. We expect them to implement excellent financial
planning systems and to ensure sound stewardship of public money.
This does not however absolve the Government from responsibility
for overseeing carefully the financial health of the Olympic transport
budget in the coming years. We expect it to be fully alert to
problems and to step in quickly where difficulties arise.
As the sponsor of the ODA, the Department for Culture
Media and Sport is responsible for ensuring that the necessary
systems are in place to deliver the sound stewardship of public
money. The systems will be outlined in the ODA's Management Statement
and Financial Memorandum.
The systems include a Corporate Plan which sets out
the goals and objectives and planned expenditure over the life
of the Programme, an annual business plan and a budget all of
which will be monitored at regular intervals ie monthly in the
case of the budget. Progress will be monitored both by DCMS, as
the ODA's sponsor and by the Olympic Board which will also determine
the ODA's budget and Corporate Plan.
In addition all projects in excess of a cost threshold
stated in the Management Statement and Financial Memorandum will
be subject to scrutiny by an Olympic Project Review Group (the
OPRG). The group will be chaired by DCMS and for the purposes
of transport projects will be attended by representatives of Department
for Transport and/or Transport for London. The OPRG, which will
include among its membership, representatives of the ODA, the
GLA and HM Treasury will provide fast track recommendations to
the Secretary of State and to Treasury as to whether the proposed
expenditure represents value for money and can proceed.
Progress on the delivery of the Olympic Programme
will be reported to the Olympic Board and to DCMS on a regular
basis and this will enable early intervention in the event of
In addition, to ensure a smooth flow of funds to
the Olympic Programme the funding parties: DCMS, Lottery, GLA
and LDA will meet with ODA at least quarterly to get early warning
of and address any cash flow issues that may arise.
In summary the Government, LOCOG and the ODA are
committed to ensuring value for money on every Olympic project.
The ODA provides regular progress updates to the Government on
the status of Olympic projects. This allows the Government to
identify any potential difficulties well before their impact could
be felt and while there is still time to take preventative action.
The Government will also ensure that Olympic projects
leave the best possible legacy for London. The real value of many
Olympic schemes will be felt not only during the Games themselves,
but in the years and decades that follow. To this end, all Olympic
transport schemes are being driven by the potential to leave a
lasting legacy, supported by temporary overlays. Some of the legacy
accrues before the Games, especially training, skill and jobs.
4. Transport planning for London's Olympics appears
relatively well advanced. We congratulate Interim Olympic Transport
and LOCOG for this achievement. But there must be no slackening
in pace if progress is to be maintained.
5. World class transport planners for the Olympic
Delivery Authority and the London Organising Committee for the
Olympic Games (LOCOG) must be appointed transparently and without
delay. The organisational structures created within these bodies
need to be focussed appropriately on the task of completing transport
arrangements for the Olympic and Paralympic Games efficiently
and effectively. We wish to be assured that the recruitment of
transport related staff in Interim Olympic Transport and LOCOG
is proceeding to plan.
62. It is early days in organising for the Games.
The relevant legislation remains to be finally enacted in Parliament.
The main Olympic organisations, including the Olympic Transport
Authority, are yet to be set up or are running in 'shadow' form.
Key appointments are pending.
63. Although good work on transport planning has
been completed, the range of activities required to flesh out
the provisional Olympic Transport Plan, and to ensure the necessary
Olympic transport links are completed on time, is extremely extensive.
We have detected relatively little sense of 'pace' in the Olympic
project as yet. Our impression is that the Olympic organisations
have yet to gel with the wide range of organisations in the public
and private sectors so that the Olympic project can conclude successfully
in 2012. This will need to happen quickly.
The Government welcomes the Committee's recognition
of the good work that has been done by the Interim Olympic Transport
team and LOCOG, supported by DfT and DCMS.
Interim arrangements for the delivery of the Games
were put in place immediately after the Bid was won. This meant
that work could continue with no hiatus while the necessary legislation
A number of critical appointments have already been
made including those of Jack Lemley as Chairman of the ODA and
David Higgins as Chief Executive of the ODA, Paul Deighton as
Chief Executive of LOCOG and the ODA Board members. Under the
leadership of this team, the ODA is focusing its efforts on: testing
and validating its Olympic Park and Transport Plans, developing
its procurement strategy, staffing up the organisations, land
assembly and ensuring effective management systems are in place.
Time spent now in careful planning is time very well spent.
The ODA is now approximately 50% through the recruitment
of its Transport directorate, all functional heads are in place.
The competition for the appointment of its Director of Transport
is currently underway.
LOCOG has appointed its management team including
a Head of Transport.
A significant milestone was achieved on 30 March
when the London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games Bill received
Royal Assent. This meant that from 3 April the ODA has been formally
established. Amongst other things, the Act requires the ODA to
develop a detailed Olympic Transport Plan.
This inquiry began soon after London was awarded
the 2012 Games and we have made an impressive start. The International
Olympic Committee (IOC) inspectors have praised London's early
work to maintain momentum on its "ambitious and visionary"
plans for 2012. The Chairman of the
IOC's Coordination Commission, speaking at the conclusion of its
first full visit in April 2006, also praised London's "very
professional approach". The ODA has moved from bid to delivery
phase, putting in place structures, recruiting staff and establishing
formal working relationships with its key stakeholders.
6. Transport arrangements designed for members
of the International Olympic Committee and other members of the
'Olympic Family' must be flawless.
Transport of the "Olympic Family", which
includes athletes, team officials, technical staff, accredited
media and officials as well as members of the IOC, are central
to the success of the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
During the Bid stage an Olympic Family transport
strategy was developed that recognised the unique transportation
requirements of each constituent group that together comprise
the Olympic Family. This was achieved through a process of information
gathering from the IOC, reference to previous Games' transport
plans, direct observation and knowledge transfer from previous
Games, including the commission of Olympic Family specific work
packages. The Olympic Family transport plans were an integral
part of the transport strategy contained within the Candidature
File and were subject to scrutiny by the IOC's transport experts.
The ODA is continuing to develop the detailed Olympic
Transport Plan. It will work with LOCOG to develop detailed principles
of operation for Olympic Family transport in accordance with the
requirements of the IOC's Technical Manual on Transport, and will
be subject to IOC scrutiny. Furthermore the ODA will work alongside
transport delivery partners such as TfL to ensure that the appropriate
measures are put in place, for example the Olympic Route Network
and an Olympic Transport Operations Centre, to ensure flawless
Olympic Family transport whilst continuing to keep London moving.
The ODA and LOCOG are developing a cohesive plan
that commences with advance notification of individual Olympic
Family members arrival in the UK, through airport arrival, transfer
to hotel and ongoing transportation to venues and cultural events
prior to their return home at the end of their stay in the UK.
7. Unless traffic in London falls by 15 per cent
during the Olympic Games the Olympic Route Network will be congested
and Olympic athletes and others may be delayed. It is not clear
to us how this reduction can be guaranteed. Interim Olympic Transport
needs to assure us that their assumption of traffic decline in
London during the summer is rigorously worked out and realistic.
During the bid, careful analysis was carried out
of London wide road traffic flows for the month of August derived
from data collected between 1996 and 2003.
In addition the Olympic Bid team carried out analysis
of lessons learnt from previous Olympic and Commonwealth Games
(Athens, Sydney, Atlanta, Manchester) that demonstrates that there
is an 'Olympic Effect' that further suppresses road traffic flows
during Games Time. This is due to a number of factors including
people deliberately taking holiday in order that they can watch
the Games or by altering their travel patterns in order to avoid
predicted traffic 'hot spots'.
A combination of this 'Olympic Effect' with the annual
August demand suppression provides confidence that there will
be sufficient road capacity to fulfil the dual objectives of providing
efficient transportation for the Olympic Family whilst keeping
The London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games Act
gives the ODA a range of traffic management powers. These will
enable it to ensure that athletes, spectators and members of the
public can make their journeys quickly and efficiently, even at
the height of the Games.
In addition, the Government and the ODA are looking
at a number of other of measures that could reduce background
transport demand further during Olympic peak times. These could
potentially include measures such as encouraging businesses to
allow flexible working or temporary changes to delivery patterns.
8. Interim Olympic Transport needs to come forward
with a system of traffic prediction that will allow the road systems
in London to cope well with future local traffic pressures and,
most importantly in this context, the influx of Olympic and Paralympic
visitors. We would like to be assured that Transport for London
and Interim Olympic Transport are drawing on the most sophisticated
traffic control systems available world-wide in making arrangements
for traffic control in 2012.
Transport for London is in the process of modelling
the anticipated traffic pressures during the Olympics. This modelling
work will be fed into the detailed traffic management plans used
during the Games.
London already has the sophisticated traffic management
systems that will be needed to control roads during the Games.
The ODA is currently working with TfL to develop these systems
further and the Government is confident that they will be delivered
9. We are concerned that the road space available
to the public as a result of catering for the Olympic Route Network
may be reduced substantially. It will be vital that the disruption
to public transport is minimised (Paragraph 57)
10. One hundred kilometres of public road will
be reserved for transport for the Olympic Family. We reiterate
our concern that could constrain the travelling public. We expect
the Olympic planners to do everything possible to ensure that
the public is not inconvenienced. There appears to be uncertainty
about how the interaction between the dedicated Olympic Route
Network and bus lanes will work. In the absence of clear demarcation
there will be confusion. Interim Olympic Transport needs to clarify
this without delay.
The Olympic Route Network (ORN) is a 240km road network
designed to provide the "Olympic Family", in particular
athletes, with swift and easy travel between accommodation and
The ODA will work closely with its partners, including
TfL, Highways Agency and relevant London boroughs and Local Authorities
to ensure that the ORN delivers the Olympic Family journey times
promised in the bid, while also keeping London and other parts
of the country moving.
This will be achieved by calculating the demand for
Olympic Family transport, the adoption of appropriate traffic
control measures, assuring that potential road space conflicts
(e.g. Olympic Family and public transport) are identified and
solutions are adopted and through the careful selection of the
roads that will form the Olympic Route Network. Route selection
will be carried out in consultation with London boroughs and other
highway authorities with TfL and the ODA jointly leading development
of the operational plans for the ORN.
London has some of the most sophisticated urban traffic
control systems in the world and these will be needed to manage
road demand during the Games. The ODA will be working closely
with TfL and London Buses to ensure that existing bus lanes, other
priority measures and the ORN are integrated into a cohesive network.
11. We are delighted at the stress which has been
laid by the organisers of the London 2012 Olympics on public transport
from the outset. We now expect to see a detailed and workable
plan created for co-ordinating the different transport modes in
a way that serves the many thousands of visitors, and the local
population, efficiently and effectively.
The Government welcomes the Committee's endorsement
of the plans to encourage 100% of spectators to use public transport,
walking and cycling to reach the games. The London Olympic Games
and Paralympic Games Act 2006 requires to the ODA to prepare and
publish an Olympic Transport Plan. This plan will set out in detail
how different transport modes will be coordinated during the Games.
12. Too many UK railway and Underground stations
are dirty and unpleasant. As a major 'gateway' to the Olympic
Park, we expect Stratford Regional station - and all stations
serving Olympic spectators - to be operated to the highest degree
of efficiency possible, and for the quality of decoration, cleanliness
and levels of staff assistance and security to be uniformly excellent.
We would like an assurance from LOCOG and Interim Olympic Transport
that this will be the case.
ODA will work with station operators and Network
Rail to develop robust and detailed operational plans for all
key stations - not just those serving Olympic venues.
Network Rail and most Train Operating Companies are
currently participating in the Secure Stations Scheme, which has
seen an almost 60% increase in accreditations since the Scheme
was re-launched in March 2005. Over 100 stations in London are
currently accredited and others are going through the accreditation
Under the Public Private Partnership there are contractual
requirements for the ambience of every station owned or managed
by London Underground (LU). This includes requiring that all public
spaces are clean and free from litter and graffiti. LU are also
currently overseeing a station investment programme that by 2011
will see all 253 stations owned by them modernised or refurbished
by Tube Lines and Metronet, and the ODA will be funding additional
LU staff and training for assisting passengers, cleaning and security
13. According to Interim Olympic Transport, LOCOG,
and the Mayor of London the 'Javelin' train will accommodate 25,000
passengers per hour, but the Association of Train Operating Companies'
evidence suggests a figure of 12-14,000. This discrepancy must
be resolved quickly.
14. We accept that there may be rare occasions
on which a 'Javelin' shuttle train will need to carry standing
passengers. But we wish to be assured by ATOC and Interim Olympic
Transport that this will be the exception, not the rule.
We are confident in the Olympic Delivery Authority's
plans for the Olympic Javelin to carry up to 25,000 passengers
per hour at the busiest travel periods around the Olympic Park.
The Javelin plans are based on running up to 10 x 12 car trains
per hour in each direction, rising at close of traffic to 12 trains
per hour. This is based on draft timetables drawn up in conjunction
with London and Continental Railways (LCR) and the Strategic Rail
The figure of 12-14,000 suggested by ATOC was based
on the assumption that Games-time service patterns would run 8
trains per hour in each direction.
The Javelin service will use the CTRL high speed
rail connection and Stratford International station, one of ten
rail lines and three stations that will serve the Olympic Park
providing a total capacity of up to 240,000 spectators an hour.
This capacity is designed to handle the busiest travel periods
during the Games and will enable 100% of spectators for the Park
to travel by public transport. Journey times on the Olympic Javelin
service will be 7-10 minutes (7 minutes Stratford to St Pancras,
10 Minutes Stratford to Ebbsfleet). The ODA will work with LCR,
Government and the new franchisee Govia to plan the detailed service
pattern which meets operational and safety standards.
As necessary, some passengers will stand as planning
and safety standards allow. This service will be popular and loadings
will be higher than normal, but with 10 rail routes serving Stratford
spectators will have a choice as to how to visit the Games.
15. We are concerned that the capacity at Stratford
International station could be severely stretched, and that there
may be the potential for dangerous platform overcrowding. We expect
this point to be checked very thoroughly, and for the Government
and Interim Olympic Transport to provide complete reassurance
that there will be sufficient exits from the platform to ensure
swift and safe transit for Olympic and other passengers.
Stratford International Station is a modern state-of-the-art
station which complies with every existing standard for passenger
The ODA will be working with Government, LCR and
Govia, the operator of CTRL domestic services to ensure that Stratford
International Station accommodates the demand for the services.
The plans for the Olympic Javelin service, developed
as a result of modelling during the Bid, include a number of improvements
to Stratford International Station to increase its capacity and,
in particular, to help spectators get on and off the Javelin service
quickly and safely. These include new ramps and lifts to remove
any potential bottlenecks around the station stairs and escalators,
as well as improving access for those with physical disabilities.
16. It has been estimated that each 'Javelin'
shuttle train could stand at the station for between three and
five minutes while passengers alight and board. It is possible,
therefore, that the actual journey time could be longer that the
seven minutes estimated and the hourly frequency lower than anticipated.
We would like Interim Olympic Transport to check carefully and
tell us the length of time trains will stand at the stations and
whether this will have an adverse affect on the anticipated frequency
of the 'Javelin' shuttle.
The ODA has given assurances that 'Javelin' trains
will only make stops of sufficient length of time to load and
unload passengers from a full train in a safe and timely manner.
The timetable modelling takes due account of the required dwell
times. Consequently there is no adverse affect on the expected
frequency and journey time of the shuttle as this has already
been factored in.
The Javelin service has been based on the following
- The journey time from St Pancras
to Stratford is 6.5 minutes
- The station dwell-time at Stratford is 3.5 minutes
These timings permit the operation of up to 12 trains
in any one hour, at a frequency of one train every 5 minutes.
17. The Government must assure us that the tests
planned for the Hitachi trains will be sufficiently robust to
guarantee their operational effectiveness by 2012.
The Hitachi trains are scheduled for introduction
to passenger service with South Eastern Trains in December 2009.
Their operational effectiveness will have been exhaustively tested
prior to service introduction, and, by the time the Javelin service
is required, over 2 years practical operational experience will
have been gathered.
18. The large numbers of pedestrians who are expected
to transit Stratford International and Regional stations must
be able to move smoothly and safely into the Olympic Park. We
expect there to be close liaison between Interim Olympic Transport
and the Stratford City developers to ensure that these routes
will be adequate to accommodate the large numbers of pedestrians
predicted for the Games, as well as being adaptable for the legacy
environment. We would like to be assured by the Government that
planning is in place to cover these points.
In January 2006 the ODA published a revised masterplan
for the Olympic Park which closely integrates its design with
the Stratford City Development. The ODA has carried out strategic
pedestrian planning and modelling to ensure that the new masterplan
works efficiently for pedestrians. This planning will be continued
and updated right up to the Games as Olympic and Stratford City
19. There will be increased pedestrian activity
during the Games. We recommend that all Olympic transport plans
and developments take as full account as possible of the needs
of pedestrians and cyclists. It will also be essential that well-designed
pedestrian routes, and good information and signage is put in
place to ensure the safety and comfort of pedestrians and cyclists.
The ODA is working with TfL Cycling and Walking on
a review of the extent and quality of existing cycling and pedestrian
route infrastructure, both in the vicinity of the Olympic Park
and across a wider catchment area, and will also undertake this
exercise in relation to other Olympic venues. The review will
enable the identification of any gaps in the network and parts
of the network that require varying degrees of upgrade and improvement.
Our objective is that new cycle and pedestrian infrastructure
developed for the Games, links seamlessly into the existing National,
London and local networks, such as the London Cycle Network.
Work has already commenced to engage stakeholders
in the strategic planning process for Games walking and cycling.
This includes cycle interest groups such as Sustrans, London Cycling
Campaign, pedestrian groups such as Living Streets, and others.
The relevant London Boroughs, GLA and ALG have been involved in
this early development work.
Once the review of existing routes has been undertaken
and stakeholder engagement has produced a final agreed scoping
document, we will commence route planning work. This will be outlined
in more detail in both the Olympic Transport Plan and a cycling
and walking Delivery Plan.
This is likely to include the improvement of sections
of national/regional strategic walking and cycling routes, such
as Greenways, the Thames Path and National Cycle Network. It will
also include more local links into the Olympic Park and other
venues including improvements to existing footways, pedestrian
crossings and footbridges. All new routes and upgrades will be
adequately catered for in terms of signage and way finding. It
is hoped that some of these routes can be completed for usage
well in advance of 2012.
The ODA is in the early stages of reviewing demand
for cycle parking at the various Olympic venues. They will look
at examples of demand for cycle parking at other Games and sporting
events, as well as considering TfL guidance and advice from cycling
Promotion, awareness raising and information on cycling
and walking will also feature significantly on the build up to
20. We expect those responsible for Olympic transport
to be alive both to the sensitive natural environment in London
and other Olympic locations, and to the wellbeing of participants
and local residents, when designing access arrangements for the
various Olympic venues. Interim Olympic Transport should tell
us how this will be achieved.
The ODA and LOCOG are committed to ensuring that
the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games are sustainable and accessible.
This includes minimising the environmental impact of all Olympic
transport arrangements and ensuring that they provide the greatest
possible benefit to both the local community and visitors to the
area both during and after the Games.
These objectives will be promoted through the ODA's
own quality assurance systems, working with the existing Local
Highway Authorities and monitored through statutory mechanisms
such as environmental impact and transport assessments as part
of planning permissions.
21. We have evidence that transport links to ExCel,
an important Olympic venue, are under considerable pressure now.
Interim Olympic Transport needs to examine and tell us whether
the capacity of the Dockland Light Railway is sufficient to accommodate
the predicted passenger flows at ExCel during the Games and, if
not, to come forward with proposals for additional transport.
The Government acknowledges the need to ensure adequate
access to ExCel in time for the 2012 Games. The planned three-car
upgrade to the Docklands Light Railway, due to come into operation
by 2009, will increase capacity by 50%. This will be supplemented
by planned improvements at Custom House and Prince Regent stations.
22. We expect the Association of Train Operating
Companies (ATOC) and Interim Olympic Transport to produce an integrated
event and rail travel ticketing system for the Olympic and Paralympic
Games as a priority, and to set out a timetable for implementation.
ATOC and the Olympic transport planners need to rise to this important
In the Candidature File we stated that we intended
to put in place for the Games an integrated ticket covering both
London's public transport system and event entry.
An integrated ticket for the London network already
exists in the form of travelcards. Both cardboard and 'smart'
tickets, such as TfL's Oyster card, can enable passengers to travel
around the London public transport network freely if their ticket
is the travelcard type.
For such a system to be truly integrated for events
both within and outside of London, as the Committee recommends,
the system developed will have to be usable on the London modes
controlled by the Mayor, as well as on the wider heavy rail network.
Ongoing discussions around 'smart' ticketing present an opportunity
to further this agenda.
TfL, the ODA, LOCOG and Government all have a role
to play. The Department for Transport is already working to encourage
Train Operator adoption of smartcard technology in ticketing,
as demonstrated through the recent South West Trains franchise
specification which invites bidders to offer smartcard solutions
for the entire South West trains network as well as for London
It is DfT's expectation that this type of ticketing
will be widely used on the heavy rail network before 2012, enabling
ODA to consider the use of smart tickets for combined travel and
23. Estimates for numbers of spectators attending
sailing events at Weymouth and Portland vary between 5,000 and
15,000. This uncertainty needs to be resolved quickly to allow
adequate transport provision to and from the sailing venues to
be made in time. We expect Interim Olympic Transport to resolve
the numbers in cooperation with Dorset County Council without
delay. This is a busy holiday area in August and local transport
infrastructure is likely to be under pressure in any case. .
The Candidature File and associated venue transport
plans for Weymouth were based on 15,000 spectators. The figure
of 5,000 spectators was mentioned in the pre qualification questionnaire
in January 2004 and subsequently revised.
The ODA's current plans, recognising the 6 likely
event viewing locations in the area, have been developed on the
basis of 15,000 spectators attending at any one time. An outline
venue transport plan was developed in conjunction with Weymouth
and Portland district council which looks toward establishing
park & ride facilities, direct coach services and enhanced
rail services to serve these events.
Weymouth has long experience of successfully managing
far larger events than those related to the Olympics. For example,
in 1994 the Tall Ships race hosted at Weymouth attracted 300,000
spectators over the 4 day event and each year the Weymouth Carnival
attracts around 70,000 visitors.
The ODA will continue to work with Dorset County
Council and other agencies. The Weymouth sailing event has unique
transport challenges, and planning and consultation is ongoing.
24. Arrangements for spectators to watch sailing
events afloat and in safety appear not to have been made. These
now need to be planned in conjunction with Dorset County Council.
The ODA is aware of this issue and will work closely
with Dorset County Council and others on these plans.
25. The proposed Weymouth Relief Road, cited by
Dorset County Council as necessary for Olympic transport, did
not however feature in the London Olympic Candidature file. This
uncertainty must be resolved, and we look to the Department to
take the lead in doing so.
The Weymouth Relief Road was not included in the
plans set out in the London 2012 Candidature File on the basis
that the Olympic Transport Team do not believe it is essential
for Olympic transport at Weymouth. However, the proposal by Dorset
County Council is being studied separately by the Department,
through the regular regional funding mechanisms, and a decision
will be made in due course.
26. The 2012 Games are London's Games. But not
all activities will take place in London. Where this is so, it
is vital that the Olympics transport planners, the relevant local
authorities, and the Government act effectively in concert to
ensure that suitable transport provisions are made. The Government
needs to assure us that appropriate structures are in place to
The Government has ongoing liaison with the ODA concerning
access to regional venues. As well as the sailing at Weymouth,
these venues include the rowing events at Eton Dorney and the
regional football stadia. Initial Venue Transport Plans have been
developed by the ODA for every venue. ODA is developing detailed
transport plans and will consult all relevant local authorities.
Suitable transport provisions will be made.
Regional football stadia routinely handle crowds
in excess of those expected for Olympic qualifiers. These venues
already have adequate transport provisions in place.
27. The Disability Rights Commission (DRC) told
us that "the 2012 Olympics provide an historic opportunity
to dismantle major transport barriers to disabled people's participation"
in life in London and beyond." We agree wholeheartedly.
The Government agrees with the assessment of the
Committee and the DRC that the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games
present an opportunity to improve the accessibility of transport.
The ODA is incorporating accessibility requirements into Olympic
Whilst the Olympics will provide an additional driver
to improvements, we have already achieved a great deal to ensure
that disabled people are able to access transport nationally.
The new services and infrastructure which will be delivered for
2012 build on existing provisions such as the introduction of
accessibility regulations making all new trains, buses and coaches
accessible to disabled people, including wheelchair users.
Over 4,400 new, accessible rail vehicles have already
been introduced into service and 46% of the bus fleet is compliant.
This has already had a significant impact on the day to day mobility
of disabled people and London is realising these benefits earlier
than other areas of the country with an accessible taxi fleet
and wheelchair access to its entire bus fleet. These improvements
to surface transport in London have made it one of the most accessible
cities in the world.
London Underground has announced that it will be
implementing a programme to improve accessibility across the Tube
network. The aim is for 25% of Tube stations to have step-free
access by 2010, with a third of all stations being accessible
by 2013. So far as is possible, works will be accelerated to meet
the needs of the Games. Although it will not be possible to ensure
full accessibility across the entire Tube network in the immediate
future, the Government believes that the works outlined above
should be sufficient to help ensure accessible Tube access to
the Games. A programme of replacing rolling stock on the Underground
will further aid the cause of accessibility.
Other initiatives, such as the £370 million
"Access for All" fund which is ring-fenced specifically
to deliver a programme of access improvements across the rail
network over the next 10 years and measures stemming from the
Disability Discrimination Act 2005 which will be in place by the
end of this year, will further strengthen the accessibility of
28. Full consideration must be given to those
with disabilities in all aspects of planning for the Olympic and
Paralympic Games, including transport. We expect the Government
to give consideration now to the appointment of a member of the
Olympic Delivery Authority Board who is a "disabled person
who has a representative mandate to speak for a full range of
disabled people", as suggested by the Disabled Persons' Transport
Advisory Committee (DPTAC).
The Government has given high priority to appointing
to the ODA Board a Member with specific responsibilities for disability
issues. The Government specified a requirement for a person who
has worked successfully with disability groups as a lobbyist or
advisor, who has an understanding of access issues for disabled
people, a working knowledge of the Disability Discrimination Act
and its impact on and practical implementation of solutions to
accessibility issues, plus experience of the staging of or advising
on national or international events in a sporting context. As
a result, a person with the required experience, and who is well
placed to speak on behalf of a wide range of disabled people,
has been appointed to this "disability" role on the
29. We welcome the intention of Transport for
London (TfL) to invest in audio-visual announcements on the buses
in London by 2009 in good time for the Games. There must be no
slippage in this timetable. Audio-visual announcements will assist
not only people with disabilities but also strangers to London.
30. Outside London only 30 per cent of the national
bus fleet is even wheelchair accessible and audio visual aids
are rare. Olympic organisers must ensure that all the buses serving
Olympic venues outside London are wheelchair accessible at least.
Buses used for Olympic venues however should not be provided by
removing them from normal routes to the disadvantage of local
residents, but should be provided additionally to the normal complement.
31. Audible and visual information systems are
not mandatory under the current Public Service Vehicle Accessibility
Regulations (PSVAR). Where buses to Olympic venues outside London
meet the PSVAR this will be on a voluntary basis. This is unacceptable
in the 21st century. The Government must amend the PSVAR to require
the provision of audio-visual announcement on buses.
The Department for Transport was unable to introduce
a requirement for audible and visual information equipment into
the original PSVAR because the technology was not sufficiently
well developed at that time. Whilst progress has been made, several
technical and operational issues lead us to conclude that regulation
would at this time be premature.
However, there are signs that those responsible for
specifying transport services are beginning to fund such systems
on a voluntary basis and we commend Transport for London's plans
for an integrated 'at-stop' and 'on-vehicle' audible and visual
route and destination information system.
The PSVAR allow operators to achieve the full economic
life from each vehicle type and end dates of 2016 and 2017 are
specified for large single deck buses and double deck buses respectively,
by which time all such vehicles must meet the requirements of
The transition to a fully compliant fleet will therefore
take place over time and operators will inevitably use a mixed
fleet of low floor accessible vehicles and older, non-accessible
vehicles. How that fleet is allocated and replaced is entirely
a matter for the vehicle operator, and neither the PSVAR nor the
DDA permit the Department to intervene in this respect.
However, Local Authorities may specify requirements
for tendered services, and this can include the provision of accessible
vehicles and audible and visual information systems as a contract
condition, if they wish to do so.
LOCOG and the ODA will be developing detailed venue
transport plans for all venues, including those outside of London,
will consult with the relevant transport authorities outside of
London and will ensure that accessibility is actively considered
and planned for.
32. Glasgow has put in a bid for the Commonwealth
Games in 2014, and there are plans to bid for a Deaf Olympics
in London in 2013. Improvements in accessible transport outside
London will increase the opportunities there to host international
sporting events. We look to the Government to lay the groundwork
for disabled access to future major sporting events throughout
The Government is committed to an accessible transport
system in which disabled people have the same opportunities to
travel as other members of society. We have already made significant
advances in this area which the Committee acknowledged in the
reports of its inquiries into Disabled People's Access to Transport
held in 2003 and 2004. We have set clear "end dates"
for all trains, buses and coaches to meet accessibility regulations
and the number of accessible vehicles in service continues to
rise as older vehicles are replaced (for example, 46 per cent
of the bus fleet is already accessible and over 4,400 new, RVAR-compliant
rail vehicles have been introduced into service).
We understand that making provision for disabled
people as both participants and spectators in proposals for international
sporting events should be seen as an integral part of any bidding
document. The Commonwealth Games in Manchester, during which the
accessibility of both transport and infrastructure was singled
out for particular praise, showed how successful the UK can be
at hosting this type of event. We are confident that, together
with the amendments made to the Disability Discrimination Act
1995 by the 2005 Act which will significantly strengthen and extend
disabled people's civil rights when travelling on public transport,
the UK will increasingly be seen as the natural choice to stage
33. Consultation on the part of the interim Olympic
Transport Authority with the Disabled Persons' Travel Advisory
Committee (DPTAC) will be needed at an early stage to determine
the design of the pedestrian routes from transport hubs to the
Olympic Park to enable these to be fully accessible.
34. We commented earlier on the need to ensure
proper pedestrian access to Games venues. DPTAC must be involved
in this work.
35. DPTAC knows what works for people with disabilities
and must be consulted on the design of the Games Mobility Service.
Mr Betteridge of DPTAC said "we are sitting on lots of information
which could be being used right now but we are not being asked
for it." This is nonsensical. We expect the Government and
the Olympic transport organisers to start listening to DPTAC now.
The Government, ODA and LOCOG are grateful for DPTAC's
involvement during the bid and look forward to working with DPTAC
during the development of the Olympic Transport Plans.
The ODA will ensure that the needs of disabled visitors
to the Olympics are fully represented, including during the detailed
planning and design of transport and venues.
LOCOG and the ODA are setting up an Olympic and Paralympic
Games Equality and Inclusion Forum, which will ensure that the
needs of disabled visitors to the Olympics are fully represented.
The purpose of the forum will be to provide technical and user
expertise into the planning and review of transport arrangements
for the Olympic and Paralympic Games. DPTAC will be invited to
sit on this forum.
36. Manufacturers must ensure that the size of
all wheelchairs are suitable for transport by train. The design
of trains need to take account of passengers using wheelchairs.
Good co-operation between manufacturers and train operating companies
will be essential if this is to be achieved. In its response to
our predecessor committee's report 'Disabled People's Access to
Transport: A year's worth of improvements?' the Government indicated
that it proposed in 2005 to commission research into the "issues
surrounding the carriage of scooters by public transport
rail". We would like the Government to tell us the results
of this research now.
37. Regardless of the actions of manufacturers
the train operators must adopt a common and fully transparent
approach by 2012 to allowing electric wheelchairs onto their services.
We also wish to know what arrangements are to be taken by the
train operators to carry wheelchairs of foreign manufacture which
may not conform to UK standards.
38. Our predecessor committee noted last year
the importance to people with disabilities of consistency amongst
train operators in permitting wheelchairs on their rolling stock.
The evidence we have received suggests that this has yet to be
achieved. We now want the Association of Train Operating Companies
(ATOC) and the train operating companies to tell us when this
Since 1 January 1999, all new trains have had to
comply with the Rail Vehicle Accessibility Regulations 1998 (RVAR).
These include a requirement to provide at least one wheelchair
space (the exact number required depends on the length of the
train), the dimensions of which are based around the ability of
a passenger in a "reference wheelchair" to board and
safely position themselves in that space. The size of the reference
wheelchair is based on an international standard and exceeds the
dimensions of the majority of manual and electric wheelchairs.
Almost all older trains that were introduced prior
to the RVAR also have space for at least one wheelchair, although
the space provided might not quite achieve the dimensions required
We understand that Transport for London are considering
replacing some of the older trains that currently serve Stratford,
with new units. Both these, and the Hitachi trains that will provide
the fast "Javelin" service, will be fully compliant
The lifting of the transport exemption from Part
3 of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 in December will ensure
that all train operators are legally obliged to carry wheelchair
users, provided there is a space available.
The accessibility regulations do not require train
operating companies to carry mobility scooters and, until recently,
the majority would not carry them. However, scooter design and
technology is continuing to develop and smaller, lighter and more
manoeuvrable models are now available. Battery design has also
improved significantly. In the light of these developments, every
train operator will now accept lightweight scooters which can
be folded and carried on board as luggage. We currently believe
that the final decision on whether to carry a scooter on a train
rests with individual train operating companies as they are best
placed to take into account the rolling stock they use and local
conditions when making their decision. More specific information
on the limitations each train operator places on the carriage
of scooters can be found on the National Rail website or by calling
the National Rail Enquiry Service.
As the Committee is aware, the Department for Transport
has commissioned research to look in more detail at the issues
around the carriage of scooters on public transport services generally.
The first stage of that research, comprising an international
literature and regulatory review, is due to report shortly and
the Committee will be sent a copy of that report when it is published.
The results and recommendations of this research will help to
inform future policies.
39. New EU legislation, requiring airport operators
to provide a service at airports, and during aircraft boarding
for passengers with disabilities, and requiring airlines to provide
certain facilities for those with disabilities whilst on board,
will have been implemented in the UK well before the 2012 Olympics.
This is good news. The Government needs to ensure that these provisions
are applied promptly, and to monitor carefully how the new legislation
works in practice.
The European Parliament approved the proposed Regulation
on the rights of disabled people and those with reduced mobility
when travelling by air by a very large majority when it voted
on 15 December. We now expect it to be adopted without further
debate at a forthcoming meeting of the Council.
The Government very much welcomes this outcome, as
the proposal was a priority for the UK Presidency and will be
a genuine enhancement to the lives of disabled people by enabling
them to take full advantage of opportunities for air travel for
business and leisure.
The anti-discrimination provisions in the Regulation
will take effect one year after adoption, with the rest following
after a further year to give the industry a reasonable period
to reorganise its provision of ground services to disabled passengers.
The Regulation will have direct effect in the UK, but the Government
will ensure that implementing regulations are laid in good time
to provide for the required enforcement regime.
40. Our evidence from organisations with disabilities
is that "mainstreaming" access provision for the sector
on public transport is the policy which should be adopted by the
Olympic Games organisers. We expect Interim Olympic Transport
to take full account of this in its transport planning.
The Government is committed to an accessible public
transport system in which disabled people have the same opportunities
to travel as other members of society. Our response to recommendation
27 outlines how we are already mainstreaming accessibility for
disabled people into public transport services and the achievements
that are already in place in that respect. We will continue to
build on these in partnership with industry and disability organisations.
The Government has received assurances from the ODA
that Olympic transport has and will take every possible step towards
"mainstreaming" access provision. This is particularly
critical given that London is also hosting the Paralympic Games,
which are the second largest sporting event in the world and will
place an unprecedented spotlight upon accessibility issues around
41. There is a potential conflict between the
present pattern of lorry deliveries in London, which exclude night
time deliveries, and the requirements of Olympic transport, which
may necessitate them. We expect the Mayor of London and Interim
Olympic Transport to consult widely about any changes; and in
coming to a decision to weigh carefully the requirements of the
Games and those of local residents.
The Government agrees that there may need to be changes
to delivery patterns both before and during the Games. Transport
for London has assured us that residents and boroughs will be
consulted on any possible changes.
42. The Government, police, and security forces
must spare no effort to ensure that effective security is put
in place for the Olympic sporting events, wherever these take
place in the UK. We are pleased that early planning against terrorist
and other threats to the security of the Olympic and Paralympic
Games is underway. But there is no room for complacency. The security
of the Games will be complex and the agencies involved need to
communicate well in order to operate effectively.
43. We were given evidence of poor liaison between
the Olympic bid team, the Metropolitan Police, and the Department
for Transport's Transport Security and Contingencies Directorate
on one occasion. We want an assurance from the Government that
there will be no repetition. We will keep transport security for
the Games under close watch.
The Government has established specific governance
arrangements at Cabinet level, chaired by the Home Secretary,
which would be ultimately responsible for security and associated
policy matter for the Games.
The Cabinet Office has established a Whitehall Olympic
Security and Resilience Group. This Group will both prepare the
ground for Ministerial discussions and act as a clearing house
at official level for resolving high-level security and resilience
related issues. The group compromises representatives from the
relevant stakeholders, including the Department for Transport's
Transport Security and Contingencies Directorate and the Metropolitan
Police. This will enable a co-ordinated and joined-up approach
to transport security for the Games.
44. The Government must guarantee that the security
budget for the Games will be sufficient to take all necessary
measures to ensure the safety of the spectators and participants.
We expect the Government to have drawn up a detailed security
budget for the Games by the end of 2006.
The Government agrees that the provision of a safe
Games for both participants and spectators alike is a major objective.
Work is going ahead now to identify the costs likely to be incurred,
as the basis for drawing up a more detailed budget.
45. The solution to 'bridging' the distance between
Stratford International station and Stratford Regional station
by the Docklands Light Railway seems clumsy at best; at worst
it may be ineffective. A rail link seems to us most unlikely to
have been what was originally envisaged when the Secretary of
State placed a condition for a mechanised link in the Transport
and Works Order covering Stratford International station. We want
the Government to examine this issue again and to arrive at an
imaginative and practical solution.
The distance between Stratford Regional and Stratford
International Stations is only some 400 yards. As part of the
deemed planning permission or the CTRL there is a requirement
on Union Railways North to provide a mechanised link between the
two stations before the international station opens. The fulfilment
of this condition is a matter for Union Railways North and the
London Borough of Newham, as the local planning authority.
However, separately to this planning requirement,
TfL has applied for Transport and Works Act Powers to construct
a new extension of the DLR between Canning Town and Stratford
International. As well as providing vastly improved access between
the Olympic Park and ExCel it will also offer a direct link between
the two Stratford Stations. The ODA have confirmed that this will
provide perfectly adequate access between the two Stratford Stations
during the Games, when the number of passengers wanting to interchange
between the two stations is likely to be very small.
46. The announcement on 8 February 2006, after
we had finished taking evidence, of the Government's decision
at a cost of £63.5 million to fit out the new Thameslink
station for operational use by the end of 2007 was welcome. Our
view had been that completing the new station would be essential
to the success of Olympic transport, and we pressed the Minister
on this when she gave evidence to us. This decision will help
ensure a safe, comfortable and speedy transit for passengers going
to the main Olympic Park at Stratford in east London. Writing
to us the Secretary of State agreed "As well as improving
the interchange at King's Cross St Pancras, the new station will
provide better access for passengers who use the Olympic Javelin
service on the CTLR from St Pancras to Stratford during the 2012
Olympic Games." We are pleased that the Government was persuaded.
The Government is pleased that the Committee has
recognised the progress that has been made on enhancements to
Thameslink. Although the new Thameslink station is not strictly
necessary for the Games, the Government shares the Committee's
view that the enhancements will bring significant benefits to
those travelling to the Games using rail services, and in particular
those interchanging with the Olympic Javelin.
47. Evidence from Transport for London (TfL) was
that the Jubilee Line capacity increase would be "45%".
Tube Lines - responsible for delivering the increase under the
London Underground Public Private Partnership contract - told
us this would be "over 40%". We require complete clarity
on what additional capacity is planned. TfL and Tube Lines now
need to confirm to us the agreed figure for Jubilee Line capacity
48. Tube Lines and London Underground should guarantee
that the improved signalling on the Jubilee Line planned for 2010,
and on the Northern Line for 2011, will be fully operational in
time for the Olympic Games in 2012.
The new signalling system planned for the Jubilee
and Northern lines has already been successfully used on metro
systems in Vancouver, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong and the Docklands
Design of the new Jubilee line system began in mid
2003, installation works have already commenced (with completion
due by mid 2007) and this will be followed by comprehensive testing.
The system remains on schedule for full completion by the operational
date of 31 December 2009. Four new trains have already been added
to the Jubilee line fleet taking the total to 63, and these additional
trains will enable London Underground (LU) to continue operating
a full service while other trains are removed and modified to
operate within the new signalling system.
The Committee has asked for clarification on the
discrepancy between the capacity increase requirement for the
Jubilee line stated by LU and Tube Lines.
The additional 7th carriage was successfully
added to all Jubilee line trains in January 2006 and this has
already increased capacity on the line by over 16 per cent. The
Public Private Partnership (PPP) does not specify an exact capacity
increase for the Jubilee line; instead the PPP company will receive
bonuses and abatements depending on when they deliver a step-change
in the capability of the line. Modelling by Tube Lines shows the
proposed line upgrade will result in a capacity increase at peak
times of 40 per cent. However if LU decides to introduce more
services outside the peak hours then this will result in an increase
of 45 per cent. When operational the new signalling system will
also allow a 22 per cent reduction in estimated average journey
times by the time of the 2012 Games.
The new Northern line signalling system is based
on the same technology as that being used on the Jubilee line
and will provide an additional 21 per cent capacity and allow
a reduction in estimated average journey times by 18 per cent.
The programming of the Jubilee and then the Northern
line was partially adopted to enable the Jubilee line system to
be installed first on the simpler, shorter line. Lessons learnt
in the development and installation of the Jubilee line system
can then be applied to the more complex Northern line.
Design of the Northern line signalling system began
in early 2004 and preliminary installation activities have already
commenced. The system is on schedule to be operational by January
2012 and both Tube Lines and LU are confident that it will be
fully operational well in time for the 2012 Games.
49. If the construction of Crossrail proceeds
in the run up to the Olympic Games, the Government must ensure
that there are no adverse financial and construction implications
for the successful completion of planned Olympic transport works.
The Government is working closely with the ODA to
ensure that the 2012 Games and Crossrail do not cause complications
for each other. A Memorandum of Understanding is currently being
developed to determine the interface between the two areas. This,
combined with regular bilateral meetings, will allow for the early
identification and resolution of any potential conflicts.
The ODA and Crossrail have carried out a detailed
analysis and comparison exercise to identify potential areas of
conflict. An assessment has been carried out of the relevant locations
and the likely impacts and or consequences of works. This is currently
under review to enable the extent of the implications to be fully
understood. As part of contingency plans the study also considers
the variable programming affecting the general development of
50. The Thames Gateway offers an opportunity for
the Government to reap a double benefit from the expenditure of
taxpayers' money on London's 2012 Olympic Games: once for the
Games, and once for the Gateway. The Government should explain
how this will be achieved.
The ODPM's Olympic unit is located in the ODPM Thames
Gateway Team, and their participation in the evolution of the
Olympic transport strategy has helped inform the Olympic programme.
Stratford is a major development focus for the Gateway project,
and improved transport connections to Stratford and its environs
are a key element in the Gateway transport strategy. The Olympic
transport programme maps directly onto the Gateway agenda, in
particular with its improved capacity at Stratford station, the
use of the CTRL Javelin connection, and the conversion of the
North London Line to DLR which will deliver 3 further stations
to serve the development area of the Lower Lea Valley. These measures
will additionally promote new development in the Crossrail corridor
and hence add support to the economic case for Crossrail.
51. The key participants in the Olympic and Thames
Gateway projects, the 2012 Olympic Games organisers, the Government,
and the local authorities, must not let the opportunity slip of
ensuring that the significance for both projects of each infrastructure
decision in the Olympic Transport Plan is weighed carefully. This
offers an opportunity for those responsible for both projects
to demonstrate good governance and management. We expect the Government
to ensure that the appropriate level of cooperation takes place.
The transport legacy of the Games, for East London
and the Gateway is an important component of the overall project
legacy. Delivery plans for Games legacies are being drawn together
by stakeholder groups comprising the relevant stakeholder bodies.
52. We look to the Government to ensure that transport
schemes integral to the Thames Gateway are not diminished in the
run up to the 2012 Games, and that the integrity of transport
planning for the Games is guarded carefully.
The Olympic Transport programme itself maps directly
onto the Gateway agenda. Additional Gateway related projects in
the wider area are subject to funding and development strategies
which are independent of the Games. These include the DLR extensions
to Woolwich Arsenal and between Stratford Regional and International
stations as part of a 50% capacity increase of the DLR network,
the East London Transit and the Thames Gateway Bridge which is
currently at planning inquiry.
53. We are pleased to note that the Government
seems to be fully alive to the importance of attracting those
with appropriate skills to work on the Olympic project. Not all
jobs will be able to be filled by those presently skilled. There
will be a training agency within the Olympic Development Authority.
This is the right approach. The agency must be set up at the earliest
opportunity and must cast its net throughout the UK. We wish to
know when it will be operational.
A joint initiative between the Government and the
Mayor of London has led to the creation of the London 2012 Employment
and Skills Task Force (LEST), which will help provide Londoners
with the appropriate skills and support in relation to jobs connected
with the London Games. LEST is supported by the London Development
Agency (LDA) and the Learning and Skills Council (LSC).
Work is well advanced on a business plan of measures
to support both local people, and those drawn from across London,
in accessing the direct and indirect employment opportunities
which will arise before, during and after the Games. The plan
is due to be completed in the summer.
The Task Force's role is to bring the main Olympic
partners together to agree how to maximise the employment benefits
from the Games for Londoners. The plans for increasing skill levels
outside London are being led by DfES and include aiming to ensure
that skills provision amongst Olympic contractors is included
as part of the procurement process and using the Olympics as a
catalyst for existing programmes such as Skills for Life.
54. Addressing London's transport inadequacies
should be taken fully into account wherever possible in devising
transport solutions for the 2012 Games. The Government and the
Mayor of London must demonstrate real leadership by taking a positive
view when considering how imaginative planning, or relatively
small amounts of additional resources to agreed projects, could
provide wider local benefits. This is no time for narrow thinking
or 'penny pinching'.
One of the key strengths of London's original Bid
was that it was based around transport schemes which were due
to take place regardless of the decision on whether to award the
Games to London. These existing schemes were designed to improve
London's transport infrastructure, particularly in relation to
the Thames Gateway. Where necessary the Olympics will add to these
to cope with the specific demands of the Games. Wherever possible
these additions will leave a positive legacy once the Games are
However, as the committee previously noted, this
cannot be at the expense of sound financial control over the cost
of the Games, and the need to achieve value for money from every
55. Many people in east London have no access
to Stratford by rail. For people in these areas the sole transport
access to jobs in the Olympic Park is currently by bus. When we
return to consider the Olympic Transport Plan in future we expect
to find that the Lea Bridge station has been reinstated. Meanwhile,
Transport for London must review its bus routes from Stratford
to ensure that people in all parts of London which are poorly
served by rail have access by bus to jobs on the Olympic project.
The Government and Transport for London are in the
process of examining options for improving transport links to
Stratford for local residents. Although we cannot commit to reopening
specific stations at present, we are aware of the importance of
ensuring that these links are supported, both to permit access
during the Games and also to allow local residents to make the
best use of the job opportunities created by the construction
of the Olympic park.
The ODA and TfL will be developing plans to ensure
that the Olympic workforce (paid staff and volunteers) have access
to public transport to ensure that they can reach all competition
and non-competition venues. This will be achieved by a number
of measures including enhancement of existing London Bus services,
creation of new services for specific venues and, if required,
extended frequencies and hours of operation.
56. Given the willingness of all parties to the
principle of using the rivers where possible for transport construction
material, the Government needs to ensure that London's water links
are closely examined and used wherever it is sensible to do so.
The Government recognises the importance of London's
waterways to preparations for the Olympics and is grateful to
the Committee for highlighting this. The Government expects that
the ODA will, so far is practical within the constraints imposed
by the tidal nature of the waterways, make the fullest possible
use of river transport.
57. By laying stress on river and canal transport,
and providing proportionately modest extra funding where this
is required, the Government will realise benefits to London, the
Thames Gateway, and the Olympic project. We invite it to explain
how it will rise to this challenge.
The ODA is constantly reviewing the possibilities
for using the waterways for transporting construction and waste
materials. However the actual percentage of tonnage moved by water,
or any other mode, will be determined by a number of
factors. These include understanding exactly the amount of waste
material to be transported off-site, what materials will be required
to be brought in to the Olympic Park for construction, and the
sourcing of these materials. These are all subject to ongoing and
future site investigation, design, and procurement programmes.
58. Rail must be used for the transport of construction
materials for Olympic sites wherever it has the capacity to do
so, especially where the alternative is transport by road. Possible
constraints on the use of rail mean that it is all the more important
that the potential in London offered by river and canal for barge
transport of construction materials should be tapped fully. We
expect the plans of the interim Olympic Development Authority
(ODA) to reflect an imaginative and sensitive approach to the
movements of construction material for the Games. The Government
and the interim ODA should tell us how this will be achieved.
The ODA recognises the need to minimise, wherever
practicable, the number of construction deliveries to the Olympic
site by road. The Olympic Park is well served by rail heads which
could be utilised to facilitate the delivery of construction materials
by rail. The construction of the Olympic Park will require materials
that the rail industry is geared up to deliver.
The ODA is working closely with the relevant rail
infrastructure providers to ensure that rail will be able to capitalise
on the opportunities that Games construction will offer.
However it also continues to work with infrastructure
providers of all modes to ensure that a sustainable strategy for
the transportation of construction and waste materials is developed
alongside ongoing site investigation and design.
59. The Government should have anticipated that
public land passed by it to the developers at Stratford might
have been required in future for the Olympic Games. While the
lands were passed to London and Continental Railways in 1996,
London's intention to bid for the Games is also of long standing.
If the Government had inserted appropriate reversion clauses into
the agreements on this land, then there would have been no question
of paying the developers to acquire land formally in public ownership,
as has happened in this case. We are very disappointed that the
Government has demonstrated so little acumen and foresight.
Unfortunately it was not possible to predict the
plans for the 2012 Games in 1996. While, in relation to previous
UK Bids, some thought had been given to a potential future London
Bid, these plans were not based around the current Stratford site.
At the time Manchester was seen as the leading UK contender to
host the Games.
60. Similar transactions are likely in future.
The design requirements for the Olympics Park will require to
cater for unusually large flows of people, while the Stratford
City developers' requirements will be focussed upon the needs
of the local population and leisure visitors. These requirements
are distinct. We are concerned that London & Continental Railways
and its partners are in a strong bargaining position vis-à-vis
the Olympic Development Authority to extract further compensation
for construction tailored to the requirements of the Olympics.
We expect the Government and public authorities concerned to take
a close interest in all such transactions, and to ensure the proper
stewardship of public money.
All the parties involved in the delivery of the Olympic
Park are negotiating in good faith to resolve property and development
issues. The publication of the new Olympic Park Masterplan in
January 2006 marked an important step forward by integrating the
designs of the Olympic Park with Stratford City. This was developed
with the full cooperation of the Stratford City developers. The
Government acknowledges the need to reconcile various objectives
within the various projects taking place at Stratford, but does
not believe that these objectives are mutually contradictory.
The needs of the local population and leisure visitors must be
respected if London is to deliver the legacy benefits that were
promised to the International Olympic Committee during the bid
London and Continental Railways (LCR) is working
in the Government interest, and has played a key role in the Olympic
bid and in bringing together the Olympic site and facilities.
The agreements in place between LCR, Stratford City Developers
(SCD) and Government have been established to optimise delivery
of Olympic facilities and regeneration of the area. 
65. Hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games in
2012 will leave a lasting legacy in London and elsewhere. We need
to ensure that this legacy is a positive one. It was not within
our remit to quantify the likely economic affect of London's 2012
Games on the UK as a whole. We support the Games. But we are clear
that Olympic transport must not be bought at the expense of important
transport projects elsewhere in the country. The Government must
ensure that there is no reduction in transport budgets for projects
outside the South East and that the benefits of the Games are
enjoyed throughout the UK as widely as possible.
London's Olympic bid was based upon making the best
use of the existing transport network, and the improvements which
were planned regardless of the decision to award the Games to
London. Specific Games transport schemes will be funded from the
Public Sector Funding Package agreed between Government and the
Mayor of London, drawn from London Council Tax, the London Development
Agency and National Lottery contributions. As a result there should
be no impact upon transport schemes elsewhere in the UK.
64. Meanwhile, we have identified above a range
of specific and frequently highly complex problems which will
require to be addressed by those responsible for Olympic transport
infrastructure and services in order to ensure a successful Games.
When we return to this subject we expect to find that these are
being tackled successfully.
66. The Games offer an unparalleled opportunity
to make public transport more accessible both in London and elsewhere
for the longer term. This opportunity must not be missed. The
Olympic authorities, and especially the Government, must also
look beyond the Games to the legacy needs of London's transport.
The specific focus on Olympic delivery must be properly coordinated
with the development of other transport projects needed in the
Thames Gateway area.
67. Travelling into London must become a pleasant
experience if the Olympics are to succeed. This will be an uphill
task. We look forward to following up this inquiry in the period
to the opening of the XXX Olympiad in London in 2012.
The Government welcomes the scrutiny that the Committee
has brought to preparations for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic
Games. There are many complex issues, as the committee has recognised,
that will need to be addressed to make the Games a success. We
have put in place the necessary mechanisms to ensure that all
of these issues can be addressed in time for the Games.
The Government will work with the ODA, LOCOG and
other relevant bodies to ensure that all of the opportunities
presented by the Games are fully realised. We are committed to
ensuring that Olympic projects are integrated with the broader
development of London. Ultimately our challenge is to ensure that
the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games leave a long-lasting legacy
for the capital and for the whole of the United Kingdom.
1 The SCD consortium is in contract to LCR to undertake
the property development work. LCR is going through a process
to terminate their contract with SCD on the grounds of under-performance,
and to replace the SCD consortium with alternative partners who
are able to meet the ambitious development timetable and are aligned
with LCR objectives. Back