£292m rebuild of Olympic park speeds-up

Grant Prior 10 years ago

The 2012 Olympic Park was handed over to the London Legacy Development Corporation today as the final piece of outer shell was removed from the temporary seating stands at the Aquatics Centre.

The Legacy Corporation will create the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park over the next 18 months during a £292m construction programme called ‘Clear, Connect, Complete’.

The removal of temporary facilities required for the Games has now been completed following the Paralympics closing ceremony.

Work has involved removing power cables, generators, 165,000m2 of tents, 140km of fencing, 240km of barriers and 100,000m2 of temporary sports surfaces.

The wider overall deconstruction programme has also been completed including the removal of the BMX stands, the Riverbank Arena, the Olympic Stadium wrap, wayfinding and signage, media facilities, fencing, toilets and concession areas, workforce areas and medical tents.

The Legacy Corporation has already begun work in some of the venues with the Aquatics Centre at the most advanced stage.

So far all 17,500 seats have been removed as workers prepare to remove its temporary seating stands on either side of the building, piece by piece, and replace them with glass windows.

The transformation project will see a peak of around 1,000 construction workers employed on the Park.

BAM Nuttall is a Tier One Contractor for transformation and Balfour Beatty is transforming the Aquatics Centre.

Colin Naish, Executive Director of Infrastructure at the London Legacy Development Corporation, said: “I’m delighted that we’re able to mark the next phase in London’s Olympic legacy and our journey to create London’s most dynamic urban district.

“It’s only a couple of months since the Paralympics ended, and the transformation of the site is already well under way.

“Taking control of the Park today is another major milestone and in only eight months time the Park will begin to re-open ”

The Legacy Corporation has planned its works to enable the Park to reopen in phases from 27 July, 2013, as each piece of work reaches completion. The whole Park will be open by spring 2014.

The transformation work will include:


New infrastructure will help connect people to the Park including reconfiguring around 9.5km of the Games-time road network, 30 bridges and underpasses and creating new footways and cycle paths across the Park.


The stunning Velodrome will form the centrepiece of Lee Valley VeloPark as the Legacy Corporation adds a 1.6km outdoor road cycle circuit which will cross the River Lea. Mountain bike trails will also be built and the existing BMX track regraded for public use.

Aquatics Centre

The Aquatics Centre will be converted into Zaha Hadid’s original design by replacing the two temporary seating wings with glass windows allowing natural light to illuminate the pools.

Eton Manor

Eton Manor hosted the Paralympic Wheelchair Tennis competition and warm up swimming pools during the Games. The Legacy Corporation will create a completely new sports facility called Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre, which will be owned and run by Lee Valley Regional Park Authority. It has already won the right to host the 2015 European Hockey Championships and is bidding for the 2014-16 ITF Wheelchair Tennis Masters Championship.

North Park and Park Hub

The green space in the North Park will be significantly extended.  New planting will include 4,300 semi-mature trees including 51 Black Poplars, more than 100,000 new shrubs and almost one million bulbs.

A new park hub with a new cafe and community and events space will be created along with one of the best children’s playgrounds in the UK.

South Plaza and Park Hub

This 28 acre area, the size of 16 football pitches, will be transformed into London’s newest public space. A spectacular urban park offering concerts, events and attractions.

This area has been designed by James Corner Field Operations, the same firm that designed New York’s High Line – a public garden which opened in June 2009 and now attracts four million visitors a year.


Chobham Manor

Taylor Wimpey and London and Quadrant will begin building the Park’s first neighbourhood Chobham Manor in autumn 2013. The neighbourhood, which will be on the current site of the Basketball Arena, will offer around 850 homes, 70% of which will be family homes of three bedrooms or more.

Copper Box

The Copper Box hosted handball during the Olympic Games and Goalball during the Paralympic Games. The outside will remain the same, but inside it will be turned into a public leisure centre alongside operator GLL. The Copper Box will have a flexible seating capacity of around 7,500 seats and facilities for a wide range of community sports, competitions as well as cultural and business events.

ArcelorMittal Orbit

The ArcelorMittal Orbit structure will not need any work, but operator Balfour Beatty Workplace will be furnishing the interior inside. It will be a visitor attraction with unique views across London from the two glass enclosed platforms.

East Marsh

Reinstatement of 12 football pitches on Hackney Marshes.

Temporary Venues

Waterpolo, the Basketball Arena and Riverside Arena (already dismantled) will be removed.

Press and Broadcast Centre and the Stadium

The transformation work on these two venues is dependent on the outcome of bidding processes, both of which are currently in their final phases.

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