Y/N Studio proposed transforming the city’s canals into a swimmable network from Little Venice to Limehouse, the LidoLine, as their entrance for the Landscape Institute’s competition to find a London equivalent of New York’s raised High Line city centre park which runs along a disused elevated train line.

While you have to ask whether they have ever set foot in London and experienced its truly tropical weather (anyone watching the Olympics this summer would have not failed to notice the chilly sunny weather we all experienced), the north London-based design practice envisages a future for London that makes the most of its waterways.

“The canals used to be functional routes for industry, but now they’ve become purely recreational,” the Y/N Studio’s Alex Smith told the BBC of his and colleague David Lomax’s vision.

The project would see a three-layer tube inserted into the canal which would allow people to swim alongside boats, and which would filter the water free of all the grub and grime.

There would be changing facilities and lockers, too, and there would also be the option for introducing frozen lanes in the winter too for ice skating.

So while swimming to work sounds like a chilly commute – and one which is far too much like hard work too – the notion of skating to the office in the winter does carry an element of appeal. And if Boris is still dead set on floating an island out into the Thames to build a new airport, then why can’t we have an ice rink replace the sniffle-tube?

Photo: Y/N Studio