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London Underground tests standing room only on escalators

Commuters and tourists on the Tube are usually told to stand on the right and walk on the left-hand side of the narrow escalators, allowing travellers in a hurry to race past those content to wait.

But passengers at Holborn station, one of central London’s busiest interchanges, are now being asked to stand on both the left and right-hand sides of upwards-moving escalators in the hope of accelerating everyone’s journey.

The pilot scheme will last for six months. A previous three-week experiment at the station cut congestion by 30 percent.

“We hope that this can lead to improving congestion at Holborn, making journeys easier for all of our customers,” said Peter McNaught, operations director of London Underground.

London’s population stands at a record level of over 8.5 million and is forecast to grow to ten million by 2030.

Over 1.3 billion journeys were made on the Tube last year, up over three percent on the previous year. Numbers have increased by a third over the past decade, prompting a huge programme of expansion and renovation.



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