Emirates Air Line

Taking London's transport system to new heights... and operating it

Our facilities management arm Macro runs the entire operations of the cable car on behalf of Transport for London. Mace constructed what is the UK's first urban cable car transportation system in time for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and Macro has provided front of house services, security and maintenance since day one.

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Emirates Air Line Project summary


Transport for London

Project value


Key partners

Aedas, Buro Happold Ltd, URS Corporation Group Ltd, Doppelmayr Cable Car

Services provided

Operations, Facilities management consultancy, Construction




UK and Europe, UK - London and south-east England

Project timeline

Start date
15 April 2011

Project story

This is unprecedented for us, and for the industry. With no systems or procedures in place, Macro's appointment included defining the client’s vision to create a fully managed and reliable service. We navigated the client’s assurance approval process and ensured we gained acceptance of all operating procedures. The result is a breathtaking ride on one of London skyline's most unique features.

The construction itself was a complex project in five separate site locations on either side of the River Thames. The two 90 metre, 570 tonne main towers needed to be absolutely stable for the service to operate safely, and with minimal movement during high winds. Each tower was designed as a complex helix structure using 3D modelling. We brought it to life in just 12 months with clear leadership, creative thinking and a commitment to getting it right first time. This ethos continues to run in the operation of the Emirates Air Line.

Project stats

36 passenger gondolas carrying 10 passengers each
1st urban cable car transportation system in the UK
93 metres high
7 million passengers since opening day

Points of note

A soaring success...

The 1.1km cable car is at the very heart of London's regeneration. Creating an iconic and alternative bridge, the Emirates Air Line benefits local residents by linking two of the most used transport modes and two venues, The O2 and the Excel, each of which attract thousands of visitors per year.

... and a very public success

Since its opening the cable car has welcomed over seven million passengers, and consistently ranks the highest out of all Transport for London modes for customer satisfaction.

“The Emirates Air Line is a fantastic addition to the city's skyline.”

“The Air Line has done so much to help to communities in this area.”