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Old July 9th, 2011, 08:59 PM   #2421
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Upbeat Coe delivers positive progress report to IOC members

London 2012 organisers have delivered an upbeat and hopeful message to International Olympic Committee members during their annual meeting in Durban.

Just over a year out from the opening ceremony and Seb Coe's Locog team are confident but not complacent that their best-laid plans are right on track.

Nearly 90 per cent of construction work has now been completed, according to Olympics minister Hugh Robertson, and IOC members were briefed on the sport testing programme, which this week included an eventing international at Greenwich Park, which will stage equestrian and modern pentathlon events.

Despite domestic criticism, IOC president Jacques Rogge declared himself delighted with London's progress on ticketing - with seats currently only available for football, volleyball and wrestling, although one million tickets across all sports will go on sale later this year.

"Both domestically and internationally, the demand for tickets has been phenomenal. It’s been unprecedented," said Coe.

"The three T’s are uppermost in my mind: testing, transport and terrific atmosphere. In 386 days, London will be waiting with open arms. By day, that dream becomes a reality."
http://www.morethanthegames.co.uk/lo...rt-ioc-members
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Old July 10th, 2011, 03:56 AM   #2422
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Southeastern to operate Javelin services during Olympics

Southeastern has announced the Javelin services it plans to operate during the Olympic Games.Between the 27th July and the 12th August2012 eight trains an hour will shuttle between London St Pancras International and Stratford from 07:00 to 21:00.

In addition two more trains will connect St Pancras to Ashford International.

Between 23:00 and 01:00 there will be 12 trains an hour between St Pancras and Ebbsfleet, with a half hourly shuttle service connecting St Pancras with Stratford between 02:00 and 05:00.

Many of Kent’s metro services will also be strengthened during the Olympics.
http://www.rail.co/2011/07/08/southe...ring-olympics/
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Old July 10th, 2011, 03:57 PM   #2423
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Olympic Stadium

originally posted by Mossy22.

image hosted on flickr

Image 047 by RM BRIGHT, on Flickr

image hosted on flickr

Image 040 by RM BRIGHT, on Flickr

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London 2012 Olympic Stadium by Last Rounds, on Flickr
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Old July 10th, 2011, 04:07 PM   #2424
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Free audio and video tour of the Olympic Park launched

A new free audio and video tou has been launched telling the story of the London Olympic Park for visitors to the Greenway, an upgraded 2.5 kilometre walking and cycling path that overlooks the Park and main Stadium.

More than 150,000 people have visited the Olympic Park on bus tours with thousands more having been to the Greenway to look it and the new 25 minute audio tour will offer these visitors an insight into the creation of the London 2012 venues, parklands and infrastructure and their legacy.

"The regenerated Greenway is a popular vantage point to see how the Olympic Park is changing the skyline of East London," said Jonathan Edwards, the Sydney 2000 Olympic triple jump champion and world record holder, who launched the tour. This tour will help explain how this transformation has been achieved and how the venues, infrastructure and parklands will work during and after the Games."

Local students were the first to take the tour with Edwards, now a London 2012 Board member, while the Olympic Park tour video and audio podcasts were created in partnership with Loftus Audio, based in Shepherds Bush. The tour video and audio podcasts can be downloaded with maps and transcripts at www.london2012.com/audiotour and starts at the View Tube cafe and community venue.

The View Tube cafe was partly funded by the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) and is a short walk from Pudding Mill Lane DLR station.

Meanwhile the multi-million pound improvement works on the 2.3 kilometre stretch of The Greenway, which links the Olympic Park to Victoria Park and West Ham Station, have been designed by London-based architects Adams and Sutherland working closely with Arup although Volker Fitzpatrick carried out the works.

During the Games, Olympic Park is looking to create a green backdrop for the Games and a new green space after 2012 for people and wildlife living in and around the area to enjoy. The southern part of the Park will focus on retaining the festival atmosphere of the Games, with riverside gardens, markets, events, cafes and bars.

The northern area will use the latest green techniques to manage flood and rain water, while providing quieter public space and habitats for hundreds of existing and rare species, from kingfishers to otters.
http://www.insidethegames.biz/olympi...-park-launched
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Old July 10th, 2011, 04:44 PM   #2425
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Old July 11th, 2011, 12:41 AM   #2426
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Some aerial views in this link.

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Pictures Of The Olympic Park From Above

...
http://londonist.com/2011/07/picture...ge=4#gallery-1
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Old July 11th, 2011, 12:30 PM   #2427
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It's all starting to come together!

Adverts from partners are all advertising the games. The stadium really needs an effective wrap - don't like the trial wrap.
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Old July 11th, 2011, 04:40 PM   #2428
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£750m spending spree set to put 2012 Games in class of its own

Consumer spending will rocket by £30 million a day during next summer's Olympics, a major economic study has forecast. Over the three-week Games period visitors will part with £621 million, with a further £129 million spent during the following Paralympics, according to research for Visa Europe.

In total, consumer spending across the full seven weeks will rise by £750 million - an 18.5 per cent increase on normal summer spending levels and far more than for previous Olympics.Spending at London's hotels will rise by £123 million while high street retailers (£185 million), pubs, bars and restaurants (£81.5 million), supermarkets (£80 million) and airlines, trains and cabs (£40 million) will also be big winners.

Much of the economic boost will come from overseas visitors who are set to spend £709 million for the Olympic and Paralympic period. For the first time there will be a net increase in domestic consumer spending with a predicted rise of £41 million, reversing the usual slump when host residents fork out on holidays to escape the Games influx.

Supermarkets and TV manufacturers are expected to benefit most from the spending spree. At the Sydney 2000 and Athens 2004 Olympics consumer spending was approximately half the forecast level for London 2012, while at the Beijing Games overseas visitors parted with £93 million during the Olympics.

Easy access to London from the Continent and the States, plus the higher costs of visiting London, such as hotel rooms and travel, have bolstered the forecast.

Data was taken from Visa cards used at the previous three Olympics and last year's South Africa World Cup. As Visa cards account for £1 in every £4 spent in the UK, the findings by economic research agency SQW offer an unrivalled insight into London 2012 spending.

Marc O'Brien, managing director of Visa UK, said: "The UK will benefit from an immediate, positive economic impact as a result of a large increase in consumer spending. Consumers are expected to boost supermarket sales as Britain lives up to its reputation as a nation of sport lovers, meaning for the first time domestic spend is forecast to grow during a Games, previously unheard of for a host market.

"What's so encouraging for the wider economy is the ripple effect this will cause: economic output will increase and the benefits will be felt in people's pockets as incomes increase. This immediate positive economic boost will translate into sustained economic stimulus and job creation, impacts which will be felt long after the Games have finished."

Steve Lucas of SQW said: "The projected £750 million spending injection will have an immediate and profound impact on the UK economy."
http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standa...-of-its-own.do
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Old July 12th, 2011, 10:59 PM   #2429
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http://www.flickr.com/photos/2223190...n/photostream/
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Old July 13th, 2011, 05:45 PM   #2430
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Fifth venue complete on the Olympic Park
13 Jul 2011
Construction work has been completed on the London 2012 International Broadcast Centre (IBC), it is the fifth venue to be completed on the Olympic Park.



An aerial view of the International Broadcast Centre (IBC)

Along with the Main Press Centre, the IBC will be hub for around 20,000 broadcasters, photographers and journalists - bringing the London 2012 Games to an estimated four billion people worldwide.

The venue was completed on time and within budget and was announced as the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) published their Annual Report and Accounts.

ODA Chairman John Armitt said: ‘The Olympic Park project is on schedule and within budget. Today’s announcement of the completion of the International Broadcast Centre means that with over a year to go to the Games five of the main venues on the site have now finished construction, allowing time for LOCOG to install overlay and run test events.

‘The ODA has hit all of its milestones to date and, while we are not complacent, we are firmly on track to deliver the venues and infrastructure required for the Games and in legacy as planned.’

http://www.london2012.com//news/2011...ympic-park.php
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Old July 13th, 2011, 08:34 PM   #2431
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The Media Centre

posted by RMB2007.







http://mm.***********.com/mm/nicePat...av=pr153887728
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Old July 14th, 2011, 03:01 AM   #2432
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Quote:
No lowering of 2012 security level, says Minister

The terrorism threat level for next year's London Olympics remains unchanged despite being lowered nationally from severe to substantial, Sport and Olympics minister Hugh Robertson said on Tuesday.

"All our security planning is done on the assumption that the threat level will be severe, and that will not change," he told reporters at a British Olympic Association BOA.L presentation.´"Clearly it's good for us, I'm delighted that the threat level is less than that but we carry on...it's an old military thing, you plan for the worst case scenario."

Robertson, speaking at the new Westfield shopping centre under construction on the edge of the Olympic Park in east London, said that no particular threat targeted at the Games had been identified.

Interior Minister Theresa May said on Monday that the international terrorism threat level had been lowered to the third highest level.

The Olympics, starting in July next year, are likely to be Britain's biggest peacetime security operation. They also coincide with the 40th anniversary of the Munich Olympics, when 11 Israeli team members died after being held hostage by Palestinian gunmen.

The government has set aside 600 million pounds for policing the Games, although it hopes to come in under budget at around 500 million.
http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/...76C05H20110713
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Old July 14th, 2011, 03:10 AM   #2433
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Old July 14th, 2011, 10:08 AM   #2434
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London 2012 was the successful bid for the 2012 Summer Games, to be held in London with most events taking place in Stratford, Newham. The British Olympic Association had been working on the bid since 1997. In December 2000 the report was shown to Government ministers.
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Old July 14th, 2011, 10:48 PM   #2435
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Top retailers rush to claim a space in Stratford mall

The vast new shopping mall in Stratford is more than 90 per cent full with just under two months to go until its opening.

The £1.45billion Westfield Stratford City centre has defied the high street downturn with a succession of big name retailers making commitments to the development. In the latest deal, the Spanish owners of Zara have pledged to open three stores at the 1.9million sqft mall next to the Olympic stadium.

As well as a 27,000 sqft double-height unit for its flagship brand, Inditex is opening smaller stores for its other formats, Pull & Bear and Bershka. The centre, the biggest in a city anywhere in Europe, has attracted more big name retailers than expected to a part of east London previously shunned by the fashion industry.

Recent signing include Hollister, Hugo Boss, Lacoste, Uniqlo and Superdry. They join a host of high street names ranging from Mothercare to Swatch as well as anchor retailers John Lewis, Waitrose and Marks & Spencer. The level of lettings is almost exactly the same as in the run-up to the opening of Westfield London in Shepherd's Bush in 2008. It will open ahead of London Fashion Week on September 13.

Bill Gioroukos, director of operations for Westfield UK, said: "Stratford City will establish its own identity in east London with a collection of strong UK and international retailers."

It was also announced this week that the British Olympic Association will have its headquarters on the eighth floor of the office block at Westfield Stratford City during the 2012 games.
http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standa...atford-mall.do
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Old July 15th, 2011, 10:24 PM   #2436
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New lamp posts in place.

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Old July 16th, 2011, 05:24 PM   #2437
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Olmypic Stadium time lapse video.

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Old July 17th, 2011, 06:56 AM   #2438
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The Olympic Stadium made in Britain

The 80,000-seat Olympic Stadium in Stratford, east London, has been completed on time, on-budget and with a near-impeccable safety record. Inside, bus loads of schoolchildren are already excitedly exploring and lining up in imaginary starting blocks on the spot where Usain Bolt and co will start the 100m next summer.



In just over a week, on July 27 and with the Games only a year away, the last major venue for the 2012 Olympics will be completed. The eye-catching Zaha Hadid-designed Aquatics Centre has also been built in Britain, by FTSE-100 construction group Balfour Beatty and a long list of suppliers.

In fact, according to Armitt, 98pc of the facilities for the Olympics have been built by British companies. That is almost £6bn worth of business, or 1,400 contracts, that have been directly awarded by the ODA to UK companies as well as thousands more businesses further down the supply chain. Altogether an estimated 75,000 firms are expected to win work related to the 2012 Olympics.

As Britain battles with fragile economic growth and businesses desperately seek work around the world, these complex Olympic venues stand as a monument to what the country’s workforce can achieve. This has been the biggest construction project in Europe and one of the biggest ever mobilisations of a nation’s manpower outside a time of war.

“In 2008, it was China’s opportunity to say to the world – 'We have joined’,” Armitt says. “I think our message is, 'Look at what British companies can do. Look at the quality, the imagination and their capability to manage.’ I think the Games themselves will be imaginative and intimate. I am expecting an enormous sense of party in London. That is something we do very well.”

That UK companies, pretty much on their own, have built the Olympics venues is impressive. That they have done so during the worst global recession for 80 years makes the accomplishment even more notable.

While politicians, the media and public will long debate whether the £9.3bn invested in the Olympics should have been used elsewhere, the spending has provided a vital stimulus for the construction industry and employment in east London. Of the thousands of companies involved in building the Olympics facilities, only 10 have gone bust. The most significant was P Elliott, an Irish construction group building part of the Olympic Village, which became caught up in the Irish property crash.

However, despite these financial challenges, Armitt believes the recession may have aided the Olympics project. “It would be wrong to deny the recession has helped,” he says. “It was good in the sense that it clearly kept down prices – and labour availability, which we saw as a risk a few years ago, has not really been an issue.

“The whole procurement atmosphere has been better than may have been the case. If you go right back to the beginning there was a shortfall of contractors. There was a boom [in the UK] and there was not a list a mile long of people who wanted to do this [work on the Olympics].

“Companies could see what had happened to the reputation of the guys at Wembley [the 2001 badly-delayed project to build a new national stadium]. Also, if you look at the Aquatics Centre, they knew it was going to be difficult to build. So, if you are a contractor, you were saying, 'It’s going to look great on the front cover of the annual report when we have built it but if we haven’t made any money then that is the only return’.”

Before 2007, with the economy booming and other construction contracts available, companies could afford to turn down the opportunity offered by work on the Olympic project. “Our lists were relatively short,” says Armitt. “Whereas by the time we got to the [Olympic] Village three or four years later, we were more active in choosing contractors because there was a lot more competition.”

The team that built the Olympic venues in Stratford and elsewhere in the UK includes some of Britain’s best-known construction companies, such as Balfour Beatty, Carillion, and Sir Robert McAlpine, each of whom led work on one of the major venues. However, the majority of names on the list are smaller companies, such as Weldex in Inverness, RMD KwikForm from Walsall and Burdens from Bristol, who supplied the materials and services.

“These projects are built by SMEs,” says Armitt. “The big companies are overseeing the performance of the SMEs”.

Businesses in London and the South East secured 50pc of the contracts but every region in the UK has contributed. Among the few contracts that went to foreign firms was the work to build the roofs for the Velodrome and Aquatics Centre, which went to German specialists.

All the contractors went through a detailed vetting process, which, says Armitt, was about more than price.

“It would be on price, their previous track record and their attitude to the values we wanted to adopt here. We have our five themes of legacy, sustainability, safety, employment and training and equality. So you sit down with people and talk about these things to try to get a feeling for whether they understand where you are coming from and whether they are ready to take on those extra challenges.”

Such considerations led to some companies being rejected after they failed to grasp the ODA’s values. The detailed selection process also helped avoid some of the mistakes made on previous major public sector projects. As an example, part of the problem with the over-budget Wembley experience was that the Australian group Multiplex, chosen to build the stadium had no previous experience of stadium projects in Europe.

Armitt and his team chose Sir Robert McAlpine to lead the Olympic stadium build because they were impressed by their work on Arsenal Football Club’s Emirates Stadium. “As far as possible” other suppliers and constructors were chosen because they had worked on the North London project, Armitt said. So, Populous was the architect and Watson Steel of Bolton provided the metal.

The result, according to Armitt, is “an elegant structure which is also a Meccano kit”, a reference to the temporary nature of the upper-half of the bowl, which is designed to meet the goal of a sustainable legacy. The stadium includes examples of British engineering at its best. Some of the steel used in the stadium is recycled leftovers from a major gas pipeline project, which were tracked down and then reshaped.

The ODA says that it worked closely with contractors throughout the Stadium’s construction to ensure the plans became a reality, despite the challenges thrown up by the recession. It cut its payment times from 30 days to 18 days to ease cash-flow problems and kept a close eye on the financial health of contractors. This allowed it to support the takeovers of any firms that were found to be struggling, such as Slick Seating, the provider of seats for the basketball arena, and the renewal of contracts.

The concept of target pricing contracts was also introduced to keep control of budgets. This meant a design-and-build price was agreed prior to construction, with the ODA and contractor then sharing any upside or downside to the costs as the work progressed. This arra-ngement created incen-tives for all parties to keep down costs.

However, for all the logistical success of the ODA in managing a construction site with 14,000 workers, Armitt insists the overall success of the projects was “totally” down to the British companies involved.

The ODA did not have to chose British contractors, indeed European procurement rules mean that it couldn’t. The process for public sector contractors has to be open and transparent, meaning companies from the continent could win. This has been demonstrated in the rail industry, where Siemens defeated Bombardier, which has a UK base, to build Thameslink trains.

So, for example, when pitching for the Aquatics Centre, Balfour Beatty had to beat off competition from two shortlisted continental European companies.

“I would argue the UK construction industry is in many ways the most proficient in the world,” Armitt says. “British consulting engineers and designers, in particular, have a fantastic reputation. UK contractors have been working abroad since the 19th century. A lot of engineers in the Middle East ask where you studied, because they studied in the UK .

“The companies here have been able to lay the ghost of this belief that exists in the UK – more than it does overseas – that the UK is not the world’s best at producing major productions on time, to budget and to this quality. For those of us who have been in the industry all our lives we actually know that is not true. The problem is that the odd ones that go astray become the ones that everybody talks about.”

The construction of the Olympics has not been entirely smooth, however. As well as losing 10 contractors to the recession, plans for the private sector to fund the Olympic Village have had to be scrapped. Instead, the Village will be sold to the private sector after the Games, with the ODA understood to be in exclusive talks with property company Delancey and its backers Qatari Diar about a deal.

There have also been complaints from politicians that contracts have not been shared across the UK. For example, Welsh businesses have won less than £600,000 of tier one Olympic contracts, compared with more than £5bn that went to English companies.

Armitt denies construction has been overly-dominated by London and the South East, pointing to the Basketball Arena, which was built by Barr of Scotland, and the thousands of companies supporting the project through the supply chain.

However, the ODA chairman accepts that for some companies it was not viable to be involved in the Olympics. “The further you are managing from your base, the more difficulty you will have and the more risks you are taking. So it might not be appropriate for a business 300 miles away from here to take a contract,” he said.

Despite preparing to hand over control of the Olympic Park to Lord Coe’s organising committee, Locog, Armitt is not yet ready to call the Olympic project a success.

In the last 10 years, successful construction work at the Millennium Dome and Heathrow’s Terminal Five has been overshadowed by operational disasters when the venues opened. “Here, I think we still have the challenge of transport,” Armitt says. “People will not be worried about the architecture of the stadium if they arrive two minutes late for the start of the 100m.”

Britain, therefore, still has plenty of work to do before it can declare the Olympic build a complete success. Some businesses are already complaining about the lack of any firm plans from the Government to promote the country’s businesses and success stories. Other nations have booked London venues during the Games to advertise their commercial strengths.

“It is a big opportunity that does not last that long,” says Armitt. “Probably for this year and the year after the Games. But after that, the world moves on and people are looking at other things.”

Britain has built the Olympics, and done so during a period of economic and political upheaval. But can it make the most of the opportunity?
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/l...n-Britain.html
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Old July 17th, 2011, 06:46 PM   #2439
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Aquatic Centre and Basketball Arena time lapse.

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Old July 18th, 2011, 05:09 PM   #2440
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Olympics Property Manager Will Accept Bids for Media Centers in September

The company managing real estate built for the London 2012 Olympic Games will start accepting bids for two media centers with a total of 91,600 square meters (987,000 square feet) of space in September.

The Olympic Park Legacy Company plans to lease the International Broadcast Centre, which is big enough to accommodate five jumbo jets, to a “big, anchor tenant” within six months, spokeswoman Victoria O’Byrne said by phone. The 29,500 square-meter Main Press Centre will be leased to smaller companies, she said.

The properties in the northwest corner of the Olympic Park will be large enough to accommodate 8,000 journalists at peak times during the six-week event.

Parts of the Olympic Park and five permanent stadiums will be sold off after the 9.3 billion-pound ($15 billion) event in Stratford, east London, ends in August. Soccer team West Ham United in March agreed to lease the Olympic Stadium following the games and the legacy company has put the 500 million-pound ($800 million) Olympic Village up for sale.
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-0...september.html
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