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Westfield Stratford City looks great!

Westfield is one of Australia's biggest companies, famous for opening hideous, soul destroying malls all over Oz (and now the world). From memory, they have a few malls in the USA as well.

In fairness, the two new Westfields in London are much better than the ones here.
Much better? I think Westfield Sydney holds its own and to a lesser extent Bondi and Doncaster. Most are suburban tragics though, yes.
 

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Theme park builders bid for media centre

The Olympic media centre could become a Disneyland-style theme park after the Games. Owners of a new entertainment park in Madrid have tabled a bid to convert the £330million state-owned centre. The company, Micropolix, has created a 100,000 square foot "mini metropolis" in the Spanish capital.

Today the owner of the media centre, potentially the biggest white elephant among the Olympic park venues, formally put it up for sale after the acrimonious end of year-long secret talks with the BBC to relocate its EastEnders studio there from Elstree in Hertfordshire.

Privately the Olympic Park Legacy Company handling the sale is angered to have the task of finding a buyer. The complex, with capacity for 20,000 journalists, is the first such permanent facility to be built by an Olympic host city. Other bidders include a consortium of fashion brands backed by Resolution Property which proposes turning it into a fashion hub, offering manufacturing and wholesaling facilities to London's clothing industry from 2013.

Sports retail giant Decathlon has expressed interest in creating a sporting retail hub, centre and academy at the site.

The impasse over the media centre raises question marks over the Labour government's desire for London to be the first host Olympic city to build a bespoke television studios for major international networks who bankroll the Games.

Olympics minister Tessa Jowell approved a £100 million-plus taxpayer bailout to cover the entire cost of the studios after private investors pulled out during the credit crunch. She and other ministers rejected options to build a temporary venue or use space at Westfield's Stratford City because there would be no employment legacy for Hackney.

Situated in Hackney Wick, it consists of an office block and 600,000 square feet of broadcasting studios.
http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/stand...4-theme-park-builders-bid-for-media-centre.do
 

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Velodrome Wins Race For Top Building Award

The velodrome at the Olympic Park in east London has won a top construction prize. The 6,000-seat track cycling venue beat 26 rival projects to lift the Prime Minister's Better Public Building Award.

Among its competitors were the £486m Olympic Stadium and the Central Park Bridge, also on the Olympic Park. The prize, part of the British Construction Industry Awards, takes into account a wide range of factors.

Building work began in March 2009 and was finished just under two years later in February 2011, making it the first venue at the Olympic Park to be completed.

After the Games, the Velodrome will be used by elite athletes and the local community, and include a cafe, bike hire and cycle workshop facilities.

Olympic Delivery Authority chairman John Armitt said: "This is a tremendous achievement for a venue that combines innovative architecture, engineering and construction into a stunning and sustainable building."

London's Tate Modern, the City Learning Centre in Bristol and Bournemouth Library are among previous winners of the award.
http://news.sky.com/home/uk-news/article/16088563
 

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Olympic regeneration "most important in 25 years"

The "most important regeneration project in 25 years" has moved a step closer after planning applications were made for the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

Family housing, transport links and open spaces are at the heart of the application lodged today by the Olympic Park Legacy Company for 64 hectares of the site that will be the centrepiece of next year's Games.

Five new neighbourhoods will be built over the next 20 years, and will include up to 8,000 new homes, as well as schools and health facilities. The plan also includes 130,000 sq m of employment space which could provide around 4,400 jobs by 2031.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: "This is an important step towards turning the vision for the development of Queen Elizabeth Park into a reality that will revolutionise the face of East London and deliver a lasting legacy for the capital.

"Creating a fantastic new community in which thousands of people can live and work, it will be the most important regeneration project that the city has seen in 25 years."

The public helped decide the names of the five new neighbourhoods through the "Your Park, Your Place" competition earlier this year. They are Chobham Manor, East Wick, Sweetwater, Marshgate Wharf and Pudding Mill.

OPLC chief executive Andrew Altman said: "This planning application represents a significant moment in making the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park a reality. As one of the most important housing developments in London's history, these five neighbourhoods will stitch together the surrounding communities of a formerly isolated area through new homes, schools, shops, parks, infrastructure and jobs."

Planning applications for the rest of the Park, including the areas around the sports venues will be submitted at a later date. The Olympic Delivery Authority will undertake a statutory consultation on the application until November 14. A decision is expected next summer.

Key facts:

The five new neighbourhoods will open in phases to the public from 2013, with families moving into the first new homes in 2015. Around 40 per cent of homes are family homes. Up to 35 per cent will be affordable housing.

Three new schools, two primary schools and a secondary school will open, along with Chobham Academy which sits just next to the Olympic Village and will open in September 2013.

Other amenities include nine nurseries, three health centres and 12 multipurpose community spaces which could be community centre, libraries and gym. There will be plazas, canal paths, roof gardens, cycle paths and 29 playgrounds.
http://www.wharf.co.uk/2011/10/olympic-regeneration-most-impo.html
 

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The Emirates Air Line looks like an interesting project.

Just how viable it is in the longer term though will be interesting to see.
 

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Victoria Hall is proud to introduce our brand new luxury student accommodation in London, due to open in September 2011.

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