Friday, 30 April 2010

East London gets a monorail

The new shiny East London line is open! It extends the one that semi-existed about 10 years ago, linking Whitechapel to New Cross. Now we can board further north at Dalston and stop via Haggerston and Hoxton (note: this is nowhere near Hoxton) and Shoreditch High Street (not on the high st but near enough for a cigar). Eventually Hackney people will be able to travel all the way to Croydon, oh dear.

I rode it yesterday and it was truly a unique and revolutionary experience, if only because I saw at least 2 pairs of strangers involved in content conversation, not just any pair but each a happy passenger and a Transport for London staff member - something special was definitely in the air. Encouraged by this I engaged in my own chat only for it to descend into a pracical exchange about running times (7am-8pm Mon-Fri).

At the time of writing the surroundings are clean in a way that stations only retain in the embryonic stages of their lifespans. Aesthetically they bear similarities to the Norman Foster-designed Jubilee Line extension - bright open spaces and minimalism except above ground and with added perpex.

With recent reports of photographers in public spaces being harrassed by the police I asked permission to take the photo below. The lady consulted with her colleague and decided it wasn't a matter of global security which is just as well because I would've taken one anyway.

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