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Old June 12th, 2011, 12:41 AM   #2341
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Landlords are racing to woo corporate tenants for Games

They are coming in their millions and all need places to work, sleep and meet. So the hordes flocking to the capital for next summer's Olympic Games offer anyone with a London property the opportunity to make money.

With hotels expected to hike their room rates into the "overpriced" category, homes will certainly be in demand - but more on that next week. Corporates around the world want to set up camp in London to promote their brands and celebrate their sponsored athletes during ther Games.
Businesses ranging from big sponsors such as Coca-Cola down to tiny entrepreneurs are currently scouring the capital for a place to call home during the Games. "Interest is growing day by day," says Chloe Couchman at London & Partners, the tourism agency set up by the Mayor's office which is acting as a matchmaker between foreign firms and London businesses with rental space during the Games.

"Companies are particularly interested in quirky and heritage-style spaces. That's the way they view London and if they're bringing their businesses over, they want their workplace to reflect that. We've seen a lot of interest in any properties along the Thames, and those with great views. At the moment, larger sites are more popular. Big brands will be bringing thousands of people to London, but don't want to use conventional hotels - but we are also seeing small enquiries, including requests for meeting space for just five people."

The money-making opportunities aren't limited to firms in east London. National teams are setting up bases all over the capital, and foreign brands are keen to be nearby. While the athletes will be ensconced in the Olympic Village, national support teams and organisers will have their own sites. The Brazilians have hired Somerset House, France is basing itself in Old Billingsgate, Holland will be at Alexandra Palace and Germany is setting up camp at the Museum of London, Docklands.

Switzerland, meanwhile, will be found at Glaziers Hall in London Bridge and Sochi 2014, the Russian host of the upcoming Winter Games, is to base itself in Marble Arch. "Both international and foreign brands are expecting fans of particular national teams to congregate near to their national houses," Couchman explains. "So they're looking for places nearby to attract their target market."

Holland's Olympic House, to be sponsored by Heineken, is being pitched as a "party venue" where athletes will go to celebrate with supporters after winning medals. Dutch brands are scouting for sites elsewhere in north London. "Other national houses are more about corporate hospitality," Couchman adds. "France is using its base as a place to show off its tourism highlights to Londoners." All venues are being asked to sign up to Visit London's voluntary Fair Pricing and Practice Charter, which aims to ensure hotels and other hospitality suppliers keep rental rates reasonable during the Games.

London & Partners recommends that any businesses with an interesting building, spare room-with-a-view or great location should get in touch. The race is on. "Plenty of competition will mean realistic pricing," says Couchman. "But there will still be a huge number of opportunities."
http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/market...s-for-games.do
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Old June 12th, 2011, 05:12 PM   #2342
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Aquatics Centre

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Old June 12th, 2011, 06:09 PM   #2343
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how are the spectators suppost to see with that big sculpted roof above the pool in the way?
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Old June 12th, 2011, 06:25 PM   #2344
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The interior of the aquatic centre really is stunning.
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Old June 12th, 2011, 09:30 PM   #2345
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Webcam shot (thanks to Angle42 for finding this):



Render released three-years ago:

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Old June 12th, 2011, 11:12 PM   #2346
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The interior of the Aquatics Center looks really good

Are they going to paint the diving platforms? The concrete looks "dirty" so to speak
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Old June 13th, 2011, 02:44 AM   #2347
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Old June 13th, 2011, 12:32 PM   #2348
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The greenary of the park is looking great. East London had deserved something like this for a long time.
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Old June 13th, 2011, 03:44 PM   #2349
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Paint them? No, certainly not. Maybe they need cleaning but the exposed concrete is stunning!
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Old June 13th, 2011, 06:46 PM   #2350
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Indeed, but it's a shame the stairs to the jumping platforms aren't the same as in the render. The stairs as they are now make it very messy to look at On the render you wouldn't even notice the stairs if you stand/swim in front of it.
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Old June 13th, 2011, 08:14 PM   #2351
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The diving boards aren't supposed to be painted.

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Old June 14th, 2011, 12:07 AM   #2352
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The temporary stands are VERY steep (3rd pic)! I think the boards look good like that...and they have a great design. I agree when someone says the stairs make it look a bit messy but...it´s ok.
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Old June 14th, 2011, 12:33 PM   #2353
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kool
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Old June 14th, 2011, 03:46 PM   #2354
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The torch looks really good.
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Old June 14th, 2011, 04:55 PM   #2355
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H&M to open in Westfield Stratford

Swedish fashion giant H&M will open in Westfield Stratford City in the autumn and the store will be the second in the UK to stock its homeware collection.

The store, which will be located over three levels, will become one of the retailer’s largest in the UK.

It will feature H&M’s full range including womenswear, menswear, kidswear and homeware.

H&M country manager for the UK and Ireland Magnus Olsson said: “It is an exciting new project and we are delighted to be part of it: not only will it be Europe’s largest urban shopping centre, but also the gateway to the Olympic Park for next year’s Olympic games.

“The UK is one of the largest expansion markets for H&M this year and the new Westfield Stratford City development is an ideal location for H&M and a great addition to our store portfolio.”
http://www.retail-week.com/property/...026107.article
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Old June 15th, 2011, 12:20 AM   #2356
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Originally Posted by Atmosphere View Post
Indeed, but it's a shame the stairs to the jumping platforms aren't the same as in the render. The stairs as they are now make it very messy to look at On the render you wouldn't even notice the stairs if you stand/swim in front of it.
YEAH! Sod the practicality of the diving boards, it's not like we're planning to use them any time soon for a sport and then a legacy for hopefully millions of people to get up them safely. Lets just make pretty things that won't work. But hey, at least it's pretty.
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Old June 15th, 2011, 05:14 PM   #2357
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Old June 15th, 2011, 06:38 PM   #2358
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The Olympic stadium - wrapped or unwrapped

Sponsor secured for huge wraparound of the London 2012 stadium - but they won't be allowed to advertise.

Impassioned discussion around the Olympic Stadium has tended to focus on its cost (£486m at latest estimate) and its use afterwards (which appeared to be resolved in West Ham's favour but will be under the spotlight again as legal challenges from Spurs, Orient and others reach court). But there has been less talk about how it looks.

When the design was originally unveiled the general public reaction was neither hugely positive nor negative but mildly underwhelmed. Its intimate design - still lacking a Bird's Nest style moniker (the Pringle has stuck for the velodrome and the vol-au-vent was mooted at one point but to no one's surprise has failed to catch on) – is better appreciated in the flesh than on paper.

But there was also a widespread acknowledgement that the minimalist design was inkeeping with the spirit of the times and the desire to avoid the overblown expense represented by Beijing's jaw dropping (but now largely redundant) Bird's Nest.

That was partly why the original design included plans for a "wrap" that would cover the stadium at Games-time and for which there were all sorts of ambitious plans that would capture the forward looking, technologically savvy spirit that organisers wanted to convey - from digital projections to animated collages.

But as the minimalist exoskeleton of the stadium began to grow out of the ground at Stratford, it began to grow on the public too. It is still likely to inspire admiration rather than awe but many rather like the pared down aesthetic.

So much so that when plans for the wrap were cancelled in a bid to shave a few million from the final cost (and so make it appear that the Games weren't immune from the pain being felt elsewhere in the public sector) in October last year there were mixed feelings. Rod Sheard, of stadium designers Populus, criticised the decision but others welcomed it.

Then in February there was another u-turn when Locog announced that, having received positive feedback from potential sponsors, it would hold a formal tender to pay for the wrap from private funds.

It is understood that Locog has now secured a sponsor for the 1km long wrap, despite the fact they will be unable to overtly display their brand due to the International Olympic Committee's insistence on "clean" venues. The wrap is purely cosmetic – early concerns that without it there would be issues with the wind inside the stadium were not borne out.

But judging by the experiments already being conducted at the Olympic Park, the wrap will end up being a lot less ambitious than originally envisaged.

Scores of individual strips of material will stretch from the roof to the floor of the stadium and the effect will be pronounced by clever lighting but it's a long way from the technological marvel originally mooted.

Rather like ambitious plans for spectators to be able to engage with the events in front of them using iPad style gadgets or their phones – which you tend to hear rather less about these days given the expected challenges in merely ensuring everyone can make a call – perhaps it will be one of those ideas that was better suited to the drawing board than the real world.

In the meantime, debate will continue to rage about whether the stadium looks better naked or dressed.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/lond...nd-advertising
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Old June 16th, 2011, 09:11 PM   #2359
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by mike_smith's_flickr on Flickr.


http://www.flickr.com/photos/mike_sm...n/photostream/
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Old June 17th, 2011, 06:12 PM   #2360
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Local residents and schoolchildren enjoy first ‘picnic in the Olympic Park’

-- Link to London2012 article --



Local residents and schoolchildren enjoyed the first ‘picnic in the park’ and walk in the newly completed wetland bowl, riverside spectator lawns and wet woodlands in the London 2012 Olympic Park. Over one hundred local people of all ages that live around the Olympic Park joined the picnic and guided tours led by the experts behind the design of the parklands.

Work is well underway to create around 250 acres of new parklands, on former industrial land, that will provide a colourful and festival atmosphere for the London 2012 Games. After the Games it will become the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park which will be the largest new urban park in the UK for over a century. Over 2,000 trees have been planted along with thousands of wetlands plants and the wetland bowl in the north of the Park is complete with 15,000 square metres of riverside spectator lawns, timber seating, frog ponds, loggeries, wetlands, woodlands, tree-lined footpaths and the largest man-made wet woodland in the UK.

Hosting the picnic and walk, ODA Chairman John Armitt said: 'The Olympic Park is turning green over a year out from the Games. It’s great to welcome local people on their first picnic and walk in what will be their new local park after the Games. The riverside lawns, meadows, wooded hills and wetlands will help create a colourful festival atmosphere in London 2012 and become a new park for people and wildlife in legacy.'

Paul Deighton, LOCOG Chief Executive, said: 'The Olympic Park is fast becoming a jewel in the crown of east London. It is a fantastic urban park which will be the backdrop to world class sporting competition in the summer of 2012 and an area which will benefit Londoners for generations to come. In the space of five years or so, this former industrial landscape has been completely transformed into a family friendly environment and a centre for sporting excellence.'

Andrew Altman, Chief Executive of the Olympic Park Legacy Company, which will manage the parklands after the Games, said: 'These open spaces and parklands will become just as important to visitors to the future Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park as our iconic venues. They will provide a different kind of attraction offering a beautiful environment for our surrounding communities and a range of events such as open air concerts and art exhibitions to retain the festival atmosphere of the Games.'

Local people attending the picnic and walk in the park included the ODA’s Construction Crew – 40 local schoolchildren following the Olympic Park construction project – Carpenters Road pensioners, the Eton Manor Association and resident groups from Hackney Wick and Leabank Square.

Features of the Olympic Park parklands during and after the Games:
  • 4,000 new 4-7 metre semi-mature trees, with over 2000 trees grown in Hampshire already planted including wild and bird cherry, ash, hazel, white willow, crack willow, alder, aspen, holm oak, english oak, rowan, lime, field Maple, sweet gum and silver birch. Seventy cherry trees have been planted, as have 8m high London planes and young black poplar trees grown from cuttings taken from the site before construction began. The trees will provide shelter from wind and sunshine across the Park. Willow, poplar and alder are being planted in river areas to withstand flooding and species vulnerable to climate change have been avoided.
  • More than ten football fields worth of nectar-rich annual and perennial meadows designed and sown to flower during the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
  • Wetland bowls and rare wet woodlands in the north of the Park create habitat and help manage floodwater, protecting new housing and venues and 5,000 existing properties from a 1:100 year storm.
  • Thousands of the 300,000 wetland plants, grown in Norfolk and Wales, have already been planted as part of the UK’s largest ever urban river and wetland planting. Over 30 species of native reeds, rushes, grasses, sedges, wet wildflowers and irises have been grown initially on the Gower peninsular in Wales, with around a third grown from cuttings and seeds collected from the Olympic Park before construction started. The plants have been grown on coir mats sunk in waterbeds in Thetford and are now being transported and planted on the Olympic Park riverbanks.
  • The riverside London 2012 Garden, which will stretch for half a mile between the Aquatics Centre and Olympic Stadium on land that has been cleaned and cleared of railway sidings, contamination and Japanese knotweed. The garden is taking shape and will celebrate centuries of British passion for gardens and collecting plants, with picnic lawns, timber seating and 120,000 plants from 250 different species across the world arranged into four temperate regions: Europe, Americas, Asia and the Southern Hemisphere.
  • A riverside Royal Horticultural Society Great British Garden overlooking the Olympic Stadium, which two amateur gardeners, Rachel Read and Hannah Clegg, have helped to design after their competition entries won a public vote.
  • New habitats for species including: otter, kingfisher, grey heron, bee, house sparrow, bat, song thrush, starling, toadflax brocade moth, lizard, black redstart, flower and fungus beetle, frogs, newts and toads, eel, water vole, slow worm, grass snake, linnet, sand martin, swift, and invertebrates.
  • Feature planting designed by the Klassnik Corporation, We Made That and Riitta Ikonen - an art collective based in the Host Boroughs – and the University of Sheffield to represent the industrial heritage of the Olympic Park site.
  • 250 benches and more than 3,300 seats built into the parklands so that people are never more than 50m walk from a seat.
Further legacy features of the Olympic Park green space:
  • The southern part of the Park will focus on retaining the Games spirit, with riverside gardens and areas for markets, events, cafes and bars in legacy.
  • The northern area of the Park will use the latest green techniques to manage flood and rainwater while providing quieter public space and habitats for hundreds of existing and rare species from kingfishers to otters.
  • A 6m-wide, one mile road cycle circuit built into the parklands around the Velodrome, with lighting for year round and evening use but low level UV values to protect bats. Also 6km of off-road mountain bike tracks and a network of cycle paths across the Park including National Cycle Network Route 1.
  • A large oval lawn with an amphitheatre setting in the north of the Park suitable for games, picnics and other leisure activities.
  • Four football fields (2.1 hectares) worth of secure and accessible allotments.
  • 5km of restored and accessible previously neglected rivers, including the original Carpenters Lock restored in a riverside bowl in the centre of the Park, connecting the northern and southern areas.
  • Mounds and hills across the Park for tumbling in summer and sledging in winter.
  • Temporary tree-lined daffodil, bluebell, clover and primrose meadows that vary through the seasons created on the development land on the northern entrance to the Park that may not be developed for many years. Rather than traditional construction hoarding which would deter people from using the Park, this unique use of parklands also reduces long-term security costs.
  • Hanging gardens’ thirty feet above ground on the huge footbridge from Stratford City with meadows, lawns, shrubs and rows of trees welcoming people over the main walking entrance into the Park.
  • A tree-lined ‘park road’ into the north of the Park modeled on The Mall and Birdcage Walk next to St James’s and Hyde Park, with distinctively designed surfacing, lighting and bollards and traffic management so visitors feel like they are in the Park.
  • A new regional sports club set in parklands with a tranquil garden square centred on the original Eton Manor Boys' Club war memorial and lined with sweet gum trees which turn red around Remembrance Day.
  • Large concourse areas reduced in size in legacy and broken up with ‘islands’ of plants, trees and meadows.
  • Parklands around the Aquatics Centre including planted hills with seating providing views across the river to the 2012 Gardens.
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