Mr Johnson announced at the weekend plans to link the 02 Arena in North Greenwich to the Excel exhibition centre across the River Thames in Newham.

The two areas are currently linked by the massively congested Blackwall Tunnel and the often broken-down Woolwich Ferry.

While commuters using public transport face an often frustratingly long journey on London Underground and the Docklands Light Railways to travel between the two.

But, with both venues hosting Olympic events in two years time, Mr Johnson is keen to exploit the fact they are only a few 100 yards from one another.

The proposed cable car, which would be privately funded and would be the subject of a public consultation, could provide a crossing every 30 seconds carrying up to 2,500 passengers an hour in each direction.

Mr Johnson said: “A cable car spanning the majestic Thames would not only provide a unique and pioneering addition to London’s skyline, but also offer a serene and joyful journey across the river.

“Passengers would be able to drink in the truly spectacular views of the Olympic Park and iconic London landmarks whilst shaving valuable minutes from their travelling time.

“It would also provide a much needed enhancement of cross river options to the east of the city.”

The consultation begins on 5 July and closes on 2 August. As design work on the project is not yet finalised, there will be a further opportunity to comment when an outline planning application is submitted later this year, Mr Johnson added.

Luke Walsh

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