The Thick of It

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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Remember where the Olympics came from

As London starts to get excited about the 2012 Olympics it reminded me of how political the event is. That a huge swathe of previously derelict London is being regenerated is purely because London had a Labour mayor. Though I won't vote for Ken Livingstone to be Labour's next mayoral candidate I think all Londoners should be incredibly grateful for his vision that brought the Olympics to London.

The fanfare and sport of the Olympics will provide a wonderful spectacle for London and the world. However the main benefit to London should be felt for many decades after 2012. East London will benefit from better transport, new homes, parks and by bringing contaminated land back into use.

While we are all subjected to seeing Boris Johnson all over reports about the Olympics we should be reminded that were he or anyone else from his Tory party in power the Olympics wouldn't be coming to London. As the "do nothing" mayor, Johnson hasn't put in place any of his own ideas. As I've mentioned previously, the much lauded cyclye hire scheme wasn't even his idea - though one he is keen to snatch the image of himself as a cycling mayor.

Four more Tory years in London and the improvements to London will dry up altogether.

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