23 March 2017 | 7 °C

DLR Is Going Places

By Jo Last edited 132 months ago
DLR Is Going Places
dlr.jpg

... To Woolwich, to be precise, or so we are told. Now, we aren't too sure where Woolwich is - it's out past zone 2, darlings! - but we're pretty sure that more DLR can only be a good thing. Also, we were amused by:

A 540-tonne boring machine for the new 1.5-mile (2.4km) stretch has been put in place ready for tunneling to start in April.It will excavate enough material to fill 40 Olympic-sized swimming pools.

40 Olympic-sized swimming pools? Given that there are only about 3 Olympic-sized swimming pools in the country - see Olympic medal tables for confirmation - making a comparison like that is akin to saying, oh, something like this orange juice tastes like a Thursday or you could fit 0.00000005% of Wales into my garden, i.e. a bit pointless.

The plans are, of course, part of the masterplan for east London 2012, so let's hope they all go according to, um, plan. The people who did the King George V extension are in charge, and they seemed to do quite a good job before, so fingers crossed.

More DLR news, reported by the wonderful Always Touch Out back in January: the platforms along most of the DLR are to be extended to increase capacity by 50%. Huzzah! About bloody time, too, as this Londonista gets the DLR every day and it gets quite hellish. The extra carriages will be a necessity, though, if current predictions are accurate; Always Touch Out reckons that the DLR will carry "80m [passengers] by 2009, with the majority concentrated on the core Bank-Lewisham route. That's around 220,000 per day - not bad for Noddy trains driven by a computer.

Finally, while we're talking about the DLR, what are the opinions of other users about the robot woman who has replaced announcements by the train attendant people in 80% of the DLR journeys we've undertaken recently? Every sodding stop she enunciates in her inhuman tones the train's destination ("This train is for Lewisham"), the next stop ("The next stop is Westferry, change here for services to ..."), and the standard patronising exhortation to "remember all your personal items when leaving the train". OK, we get the idea, now SHUT UP! Hearing her say exactly the same thing every day is playing merry hell with our mental equilibrium (red mist descending) and we're pretty sure that the information about changing at Canary Wharf for the Jubilee Line is wrong - surely Heron Quays is a lot closer. We miss the announcements by the train attendants; they often crossed the line from functional to positively pleasant ("Have a great day, everyone" always made us smile) and were a bright spot in an otherwise purgatorial morning commute. If this is progress, call us Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells. In my day we had proper announcements, not these horrid automated ones you get nowadays ...

Last Updated 08 March 2006

kevjep

It says change for Canary Wharf at Heron Quays too. Which station is quicker for the tube depends on which direction you're travelling in!

martin

You ought to try commuting on the Central Line, then.

Jo

Martin: as it happens, I do commute on the Central Line, from Bank to Lancaster Gate, every sodding day - and it's a lot easier than the DLR stretch (it helps that a lot of people get off at Bank).

kevjep: Shall we agree to disagree? I still reckon Heron Quays is faster whichever direction you're coming from - we should have a race to find out. Are you keen? :)

Dave

I think the new announcements are a bit flaky. They only seem to work at certain stations. And the other day I had the joy of sitting in a DLR train at Canary Wharf listening to the stupid announcement voice repeating: "Bank. Bank. Bank. Bank. Bank..." over and over again until the train started moving. Quite annoying.

I agree with kevjep on which DLR station is quicker for the tube. If you're on the DLR headed south, it's definitely quicker to get off at Canary Wharf and walk to the tube than it is to stay on, go one stop further to Heron Quays and then walk to the tube.

But you've got to make sure you walk the right way...