London to add 100 new taxi ranks to meet passenger demand
One hundred extra taxi ranks are being created on London’s streets to meet the demand for passengers seeking a black cab.
In a novel move, Transport for London (TfL) is seeking sponsorship for late-night marshals to run taxi ranks with a view to improving customer safety.
A number of the new ranks are earmarked for opening outside Underground stations to coincide with the 24-hour service being planned for the Tube. The Evening Standard reports that when the new ranks are in operation within the next five years, it will mean the capital is serviced by 600 ranks.
The authorities are looking at prioritising the siting of the ranks at railway stations as well as hotels and night clubs to reduce the prospect of touting. It will also, transport bosses believe, reduce the exposure of Londoners to 'bogus' cabs, while it would make taxi use easier for disabled passengers.
Plans are also afoot to improve services in outer London, by establishing more 'island' ranks. This will allow taxi drivers from suburban areas the opportunity to pick up passengers from the edge of their licensed area.
Following a London Assembly transport committee report on taxis, TfL chief Sir Peter Hendy, said they recognized that this area of transport had to move with the times.
Over 90 minicab touts were arrested in 2014 under TfL’s Safer Travel at Night campaign while some 3600 minicabs and taxis were checked.