Anorak News | Is London Ready To Adopt The Two-Speed Pavements New York Joked About?

Is London Ready To Adopt The Two-Speed Pavements New York Joked About?

by | 3rd, November 2010

READY for a two-speed Oxford Street? The Wall Street Journal has the most dumb PR-led story of the day as it tells of plans to turn Oxford Street’s pavements into a dual carriage: one slow lane for shoppers; one faster lane for workers and “residents”. The idea was mooted for New York as a spoof. Will London run with it for real? Well, no.

Take that comment on “residents” walking down Oxford Street. Only tourists and teenagers looking for Top Shop walk down Oxford Street. The rest walk down Wigmore Street to the north and then cross Oxford Street as one might jump a freshly laid dog turd or muddle puddle.

This bit of nonsense emerges from the New West End Company, “a group of 600 business owners in the district around Oxford Street”.

Says the WSJ:

But London’s line would likely be virtual. Under the plan being hatched by Dame Judith Mayhew Jonas, chairman of New West End Company, maps available at airports, hotels and other traveler spots would tell visitors to cling to buildings.

It gets better:

Those in the fast lane couldn’t legally be stopped from eating, smoking, talking on the phone or walking dogs.

Walking dogs? The only dogs on Oxford Street are sat by the beggars. And since when did smokers walk fast? Smokers stand still in small sad huddles with their arms folded across their chests and engaged in conspiratorial chatter, the death-throes of spirit played out in small spits of smoke against an imported grind of over-regulation and imported insurance-led risk averse Americana.

Anyhow, Dame Judith can’t keep up the rubbish for long and plays her hand:

“It is important that you make the environment friendly—both for local people who may be rushing out at lunchtime to buy something and visitors who are taking their time and looking at the architecture.”

The what?

“It obviously would be difficult to enforce.”

Listen up. Here’s one word of advice for anyone visiting Oxford Street: don’t.

Posted: 3rd, November 2010 | In: The Consumer Comment | TrackBack | Permalink