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London businesses fear Olympic queues

Monday, July 02, 2012 - 01:50

July 2 - With the London 2012 Olympic Games just a few weeks away the threat of transport chaos is worrying London businesses. Hayley Platt reports

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They've been working through the night to get London's roads ready for the Olympics. But the 'Olympic only' lanes are reserved for dignitaries and athletes. Every one else must fend for themselves and that, says Bun Munn of land consultants CBRE, is bad for business. SOUNDBITE: Ben Munn, Head of Workplace Strategies at CBRE, saying (English): "A million extra people every day on the transport system is not going to be easy. Queuing for an hour or more to get to on a tube train is not really going to be much run so a lot of our clients and businesses that we talked to are telling their staff to stay at home." But working from home isn't an option for everyone. SOUNDBITE: London taxi driver, saying (English): "It's going to be chaos, absolute chaos. You know a lot of the roads we're not going to be able to use, they say visitors numbers are going to be down so I think it's going to be a waste of time." For months Olympic organisers have been advising Londoners and commuters to walk or cycle during the games. Even catching a bus could be problem - as drivers are threatening to strike unless they receive £500 stress money. (SOUNDBITE)(English) COMMUTER SANDRA JONES SAYING: "Absolutely diabolical and everybody is worried. I know a lot of people who have taken holiday to go away because they can't cope with it." (SOUNDBITE)(English) COMMUTER ANTHONY ALLEYNE SAYING: "I work up here in London Bridge and I think I'm going to be working from home half the time, to be honest with you, because it's going to be chaos." They're not alone - many of the largest banks are on the main routes to and from the Olympic site and thousands of bankers are expected to stay away from the capital during the games. Even the UK Treasury isn't taking any chances. It's cancelled all bond sales during the Olympics in case there's no-one around to buy them. Hayley Platt, Reuters.

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London businesses fear Olympic queues

Monday, July 02, 2012 - 01:50