London 2012: Olympic Route Network - Your Views

Olympic Route Network sign, pic courtesy of TfL Games Lanes are meant to ensure reliable transport times for athletes, officials, media and sponsors

Olympic host cities are required to put in place a road network ensuring reliable journey times for those involved in making the Games happen.

But the introduction of an Olympic Route Network (ORN) and Games Lanes for officials, media, VIPs and emergency vehicles during this summer's Games has sparked anger.

Businesses and residents are concerned about increased congestion and traffic restrictions, particularly in London.

Here is a selection of your views on the issue:


Keith Dickens, from Holborn in London, says: "Central London will be a total disaster - where I live, how can Southampton Row and Russell Square be closed down to one single traffic lane!!!!!

"I cannot even turn into Upper Woburn Place as I normally do, I will have to try and use Gower Street to get home to Holborn - journey times will double and heaven forbid a traffic light failure or accident - local people here did not want the Games - I wonder how this will impact on Ken Livingstone or Lord Coe?

"I bet they will have special privileges to travel - as usual it's the person in the street who suffers, most of the residents are having to think of leaving London for the Games just to get away from the chaos that will result."

Paul Harris, from Chelmsford, says: "I have to travel into London, through Stratford, every day for work. I'm dreading the Olympics.

London 2012 - One extraordinary year

London 2012 One extraordinary year graphic

"It's clear that the existing transport system is barely fit for purpose on a normal day, but with the Olympics as well I fear it will become impossible to travel reliably and safely. Will I see a refund on my £4,300 per year ticket for this inconvenience? Not likely!

"The redeveloped Stratford station is farcical - it's simply not big enough, or well designed enough, to cope. I want to be excited about the Olympics, but the spectre of at least three weeks of nightmare travel is depressing."

P, from Croydon, says: "I will be working at ExCel over the Games and I am dreading getting to & from work! I don't think the DLR is going to be able to take the onslaught at all, as for the trains & tubes well they can't handle the congestion as it is, every morning there are people killing themselves just to squeeze on to our over packed trains so it will be horrendous during the Games.

The train companies put up the fares but don't give us the commuter any respite!! I have a feeling the Games will be the downfall of Britain. The world will see what sort of selfish, incompetent, unorganised & pathetic system we have here!!"

Laura, from London, says: "I'm personally dreading the Olympics, and don't feel Locog, Boris etc have done much to reassure me that I won't be crushed to death on the tube or be stuck in gridlock traffic for hours on end.

"I recognise that the Olympics is a spectacular event and I wish I felt more excited about it. I just can't help but wonder how a city which is already full to capacity is going to cope with the extra few thousand athletes, journalists and tourists."


Craig Anderson, from London, says: "I had a meeting with people from the Olympic committee and they said that during peak times when the most popular events are on then they expect the queue to just board the tube at Bank station to be 90 minutes!

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These Games will cause delivery chaos in London, the official site with 'printable plans' is a joke, and having spoken to the Metropolitan Police on these issues it would seem they agree”

End Quote Robert Newbury

"They have no way of dealing with accidents/breakdowns which are common in London. It will be complete gridlock. I can't wait to say 'I told you so'."

Richard, from Birmingham, says: "Our company Head Office is in Canary Wharf and I along with a number of colleagues are there for meetings on a weekly basis.

We, along with all of the permanent staff, have been asked to avoid being in the office for three weeks during the Olympics to reduce the usage of the Jubilee Line. This is at the request of Locog who have basically admitted that the network cannot cope with both commuters and spectators.

I'm not sure what planet Lord Coe and his mates, being whisked around in chauffeur driven cars, live on if they expect us not to work for three weeks! Will Lord Coe and Locog look after us when we lose our jobs because our employer has gone bust simply because we couldn't go about our day to day business?"

Simon, from London, says: "It beggars belief that the TfL, Locog, Tanni Grey-Thompson think that if you 'Make it good for the athletes you make it good for everyone else' - it is pure rubbish. London's transport infrastructure is unable to cope with the current volume of traffic - add in the Olympic traffic and it will grind to a halt.

"In a time of economic downturn businesses are told to stagger working hours/look to shut down for a week or two - or should we just say suffer and lose money. Everything about TfL is disconnected from the real world - and this is no different.

John Wolfendale, from Kenley in Surrey, says: "I am a PCO-registered chauffeur working every day in London. My service offering is just the sort of benefit high net-worth individuals are expecting to use when they visit this great city of London - I fear for what they are going to get if they flock to London in July and August.

"I have tried to make sense of the ORN but find it difficult to get a clear picture - I do not yet know if I am going to be allowed to get near any of the venues to drop off (or even worse - pick up).

"Lord help anyone living in Mayfair (or wanting to visit there). The only road open appears to be southbound from Park Lane to access it and the same to exit - utter madness.

"I am sure the authorities will communicate with the working population of London at some point but..."


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There are more than 1,000 volunteers nationally, members of the Nationwide Association of Blood Bikes who use motorcycles to deliver blood free of charge to hospitals”

End Quote Mike Belch Cheddar, Somerset

Robert, from Newbury, says: "I have just completed contingency planning for my company with reference to getting medical equipment into hospitals in or near the Olympic zones during this period.

"It is clear that very little planning has been done by the Olympics Groups to counter traffic issues, these Games will cause delivery chaos in London, the official site with 'printable plans' is a joke, and having spoken to the Metropolitan Police on these issues it would seem they agree.

"Courier and transport companies will lose tens of thousands of pounds over this period and many non-Olympic businesses will fail to get deliveries they need during this time... And these 'Olympic Lanes' will just increase the disruption... Not impressed!"

Albert Rapacioli, from London, says: "During working hours it won't really affect me because I drive an ambulance and have blue lights and sirens. In fact the Olympic lanes may even help to get through traffic.

"Outside of working hours I'll be staying well away from the Olympic venues, except for the Women's Volleyball, for which I managed to get tickets."

Mike Belch, from Cheddar in Somerset, says: "Blood transport is not a problem.

"There are more than 1,000 volunteers nationally, members of the Nationwide Association of Blood Bikes who use motorcycles to deliver blood free of charge to hospitals.

"Motorcycles never get stuck in traffic so that solves the Olympic problem, plus it saves the NHS money at the same time."

Games Maker

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Will Games Makers be able to use the priority lanes too?”

End Quote

Kate Pearson, from Southampton, says: "I have been picked as a "Games Maker" in Greenwich Park and shall be camping in Kent during my time at the Olympics.

"Will Games Makers be able to use the priority lanes too?

"Otherwise I can see us being stuck in traffic and unable to get to our shifts if we have to use the same travel 'channels' as the public."


Sandy, from London, says: "Rather than trying to out-compete each other on how terrible transport will be for them, I wish people would recognise that it's a great opportunity to take pride in their city, welcome thousands of visitors, and be part of something memorable.

"It's a choice - out-do each other to point out problems and frame everything in a negative light, or accept that it's happening anyway, realise that this event will be what we all make it, and pull together (by being flexible for just two weeks) to make it the best experience possible."

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We've just received a dedicated mail from Locog about parking restrictions and what the intention is. They seem to have struck the right balance between residents needs and that of the athletes and spectators.”

End Quote Stuart Auckland Windsor

Jay Warn, from London, says: "I live in East London, very close to the Olympic Site in Stratford. The transport issues are ridiculous.

"My mum has been told the roads she usually uses to drive to work in Limehouse will now be unavailable, so she will have to travel the entire summer on the DLR - which, by the way, is already overcrowded!"

Claire Manwani, from Lowestoft in Suffolk, says: "I was born and brought up in the East End and lived there for 41 years. I often visit Pat and Toni Davey as they are long-time friends, and the roads are already horrendous without the planned Olympic closures.

"It's absolutely unacceptable that the authorities are planning to ride roughshod over the local residents just to make the travelling smoother for pampered VIPs.

"If I still lived there I'd be lying down in the Highway to stop the VIP traffic and I'm sure there'd be plenty of people joining me!"

John Rees, from Windsor, says: "Have to take some issues with Mr Shepherd about parking arrangements in Windsor - we have all received from the organisers in the mail yesterday a comprehensive plan for preserving residents parking in west Windsor around the racecourse and surrounding area(s).

"These plans look ok and are realistic. There are also planned drop-in meeting sites over the coming weeks so that residents can raise any queries... Well done the organising committee."

ME, from Hastings, East Sussex, says: "There are rumours locally that we will lose buses from Hastings as they and their drivers are hired for transfers of Olympic athletes.

This is because TfL and the ODA are paying a significant premium. Transport disruption it would seem will not be limited to the vicinity of Olympic venues.

Ian, from Woking, says: "The tripling of park and ride charges in Weymouth doesn't surprise me in the least but it's not just people close to Olympic events suffering from 'Olympic inflation'.

"I used my local car hire firm last week and they had a memo to staff pinned up behind the desk saying their charges for larger vehicles were going up over the Olympic period, but as not as much as some firms who were doubling their prices - the boss of this company described his competitors price hikes as 'extortionate'."

Stuart Auckland, from Windsor, says: "Why oh why do we have to be so negative! This is the Olympic Games - embrace and enjoy it!!

"I live in Windsor and we have been informed. Our main relief road and roundabout for access in and out of the road has been fully upgraded.

"We've just received a dedicated mail from Locog about parking restrictions and what the intention is. They seem to have struck the right balance between residents needs and that of the athletes and spectators.

"Yes it will be busy, yes there will be delays - we're a tiny country, with a very compact capital city but it's only for a few weeks to allow the greatest show on earth to be staged."

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