Now there is talk of New York City building their own 'Eye.'
"The north shore of New York City’s Staten Island near its ferry connection with Lower Manhattan may become the home of a Ferris wheel bigger than the London Eye, according to a person familiar with the potential deal...
"The New York City Economic Development Corp. last year asked developers for ideas on developing two parcels on Staten Island’s St. George waterfront, which has missed out on the “huge opportunity” of New York City’s 8 million residents, according to the agency. The ferry connecting the island to Manhattan, 25 minutes across the bay, is the city’s third-most- popular tourist attraction and 70,000 daily commuters pass through the terminal.
“It’s the greatest thing that has been proposed for Staten Island, especially on the waterfront,” James Molinaro, the borough president, said in a telephone interview. “This could landmark us. We have 2 million tourists a year on the ferry, so we have a built-in audience to use it, and it’s a different audience every day. Once you can attract them off that boat, you got them here.”
The Pod, London Eye
Each pod seems huge, and can hold 25 people. There are 32 pods.
Contrast that with the first Ferris Wheel, assembled in Chicago for the Columbian Exposition of 1893:
"The Columbian Exposition opened on May 1,1893, while the steelworkers barely paused to watch, high on the growing Wheel. By June 9, the Wheel, as yet without cars, was ready for a trial run. At six o'clock in the evening with trusted men stationed at various points, Rice ordered the steam turned on. Slowly, without a creak or groan and only the soft clink of the chain, the great wheel began to turn... in twenty minutes, it had completed one revolution. When he got the word, Ferris, who was in Pittsburgh at the time, immediately ordered the 36 cars hung.
Visitors and participants at the Exposition had viewed the Wheel as an enigma, but the sight of it moving slowly on that summer evening galvanized them into action... from all sides crowds formed, shouting , gesturing... On June 10, one car was hung; by June 13, twenty more had been added and the offices and loading platforms practically completed.
The cars were 24 feet long, 13 feet wide, and 10 feet high, and weighed 26,000 pounds. Each car carried fancy twisted wire chairs for 38 of the 60 passengers. The five large plate glass windows on each side were fitted with heavy screens and the doors at each end were provided with secure locks.. firefighting equipment was carried as a safeguard.. Six platforms were arranged to speed loading and unloading, with a guard at each t9 signal the operator when his car was filled and locked. Conductors rode in each car to answer patrons' questions or, if necessary, to calm their fears.
On June 11, with six cars hung, Daniel Burnham arrived to take a trial trip and Margaret Ferris, who had often given words of encouragement to workers on the Wheel, also went along~the Wheel's first woman passenger. At six o'clock on June 13, Rice held a trial trip for the local press who were very enthusiastic in their praise... correspondents, particularly those from foreign countries, began making repeated requests for drawings and data, but Ferris appears to have been very reticent about releasing details. As a consequence, no copies of the original plans or calculations have survived."
London Eye, overlooking Westminster Bridge (over the Thames) and Palace of Westminster
London Eye - at Night
County Hall Building