Bye bye Eye?

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Friday 20 May 2005 12.34pm
Are SBC being hideously shortsighted? How many SB visitors come because of the Eye?

Friday 20 May 2005 12.36pm
Well of course they aren't *really* trying to get the London Eye shut down - it's just a bargaining tactic, despite the rather bizarre public row it has stirred up.

Editor of the London SE1 website.
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Friday 20 May 2005 12.38pm
Pretty hard ball! Aren't SBC a public body, or not for profit or something?
Friday 20 May 2005 12.43pm
Yes, but to play devil's advocate, isn't it right that SBC should maximise the income it gains from the area of Jubilee Gardens that was taken away from local people for commercial purposes by the London Eye?

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Friday 20 May 2005 12.49pm
Certainly they have a stewardship duty to ensure that public money is well spent and that the revenue to the SBC from private sources is as high as appropriate. But they have to Balance that against driving the development of the South Bank. Evicting the Eye would (a)cut off a revenue stream and (b)remove one of the most popular tourist attractions in the south bank, with, I'd expect, pretty negative repercussions for investment, employment and business tax revenues.

Of course if it is just posturing then neither SBC or the Eye backers expect it to come to an eviction, so it acts as no real threat to the Eye and makes SBC look like venal thugs.
Friday 20 May 2005 1.13pm
Economics aside (and we've got to assume that the current rent provides a return that the landlords were happy with over the period up to now, and I can't imagine anyone can justify an argument that rates of return/costs have risen substantially over the period the Eye's been there), we are talking about a comparatively teeny bit of space which houses IMHO the most distinctive landmark London has had for decades.

...if you press it, they will come.
Friday 20 May 2005 2.39pm
The increase is what seems to me to be OTT. Putting rents up in line with inflation and what not seems reasonable, but this increase is massive. Yes, of course, the Eye is part and parcle of our skyline and it should certainly stay.
Friday 20 May 2005 2.56pm
I agree that this makes the SBC look bad. Yes, they have a duty to get value for the area but the tactics here of spending public money on private lawyers to chase companies who have invested in the area is very short sighted.

What a fantastic advert for companies thinking of coming to the area. Invest in the area and we'll send our lawyers after you in a few years time.

Should the SBC not be working hard to make sure the beach idea reaches fruition rather than chasing away London icons?

Friday 20 May 2005 4.18pm
Perhaps they've had a tempting offer from BellEnd to build a new "luxury" apartment block on the site of the Eye.

...if you press it, they will come.
Friday 20 May 2005 4.25pm
Can you imagine the look on their face if they actually had their bluff called and the Eye vanished to a more welcoming venue! Classic case of lawyers letters only having one tone - must sound as aggressive as possible so they don't think we're bluffing. hmmm....
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