Greenwich Peninsula Blog – Including Greenwich Millenium Village News

From the Greenwich Millenium Village to the o2

O2 Skywalk Proposed

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O2 Walkway

I’m a little slow off the blocks for this story, but bear in mind this is a fledgling blog and I’ve got a lot of ground to make up!

For those in the dark, there’s been a new planning application submitted for a ‘Skywalk’ across the roof of the O2. Ignoring the rather impressive renders for just a moment, the concept goes as follows…

Visitors will gather around the southern end of the dome (near to where the current box office booths are) and will be required to don  safety equipment. Groups of around 30 people will then be taken up a lift onto the main walkway and lead across the full diameter of the dome, in what is promised to a “challenging and physical walk” . There’ll be a viewing platform in the middle of the dome promising 360 degree views across London before the groups are lead back down to terra firma at the northern pavillion.

The whole idea is billed as “providing enhanced daytime attractions to compliment the existing evening attractions” which is understandable; during weekdays the o2 is like an eerie, post-apocalyptic Disneyland.

However, with the Thames Cable Car currently under construction and promising to offer similar views across London, is the Skywalk setting itself up to be the Peninsula’s next white elephant?

I sincerely hope not. The northern end of the peninsula still requires a lot of development, and anything that helps to bring in more visitors is undoubtedly a good thing. Besides, I don’t think the Skywalk will sell itself just on the views; the opportunity to climb over the largest domed structure in the world is, quite frankly, rather cool. Besides, it’s not like it might cost the tax payer £57 million…

The hardest part is going to be persuading people to travel to North Greenwich during the day. Other than Cineworld, the Brit Music Experience and a hoard of chain restaurants, the area doesn’t have the same pull as the entertainment districts in Central London. Over time this may well change of course, especially with the building of a new 450 bed hotel, the upcoming Peninsula Festival and the new cruise liner terminal.

However, not all attempts at brightening up the Peninsula have been well received. Back in March plans were submitted to adorn the East Greenwich Gas Holder with a huge externally illuminated advertisement banner (24 x 252 metres), but the plans were quickly squashed on safety grounds.

Pitty. However garish and overbearing the banner might have been, surely anything to brighten up the post-industrial landscape would have been a welcome relief. I’m also not entirely convinced with the safety arguement, but that’s a discussion for another time…

More concept renders for the o2 Skywalk can be found here.

Written by greenwichpeninsula

July 6, 2011 at 1:37 pm

Posted in Local News, New Developments

Tagged with ,

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