London 2012 Olympic Equestrian Venue Overview

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An artist's impression of London's Greenwich Park as the equestrian venue might look during the Olympics next year. The city of London is clearly visible in the background. © 2011 Populous

LONDON, Feb. 17–New images of the planned 2012 Olympic equestrian stadium in Greenwich Park were released Thursday by the London Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG).

The images–they also included the archery and canoe slalom sites–were released to show the work done to enable more than 120 temporary venues to be created for the more than 20,000 Olympic and Paralympic athletes and an expected 10 million ticketed spectators.

“The London 2012 Games are unique for their innovative approach to the use of temporary and existing venues both on and off the Olympic Park,” LOCOG said in releasing the images. “To achieve this and deliver a consistent look and experience for all participants, each of the venues requires detailed ‘overlay’ design, engineering and construction to stage the Games.

“From Horse Guard’s Parade for Beach Volleyball, to Greenwich Park for Equestrian and Modern Pentathlon, London is being used as the stunning backdrop for events hosted in entirely temporary venues.”

LOCOG is directing Populous, Atkins and Drivers Jonas Deloitte to develop all aspects of the venues from the look and feel, the user experience, seating, accommodation and landscaping, as well as behind-the-scenes requirements including power, water and lighting.

Highlights of Greenwich Park include:

•       World Heritage Site
•       Hosting Equestrian  plus combined running, shooting and jumping event of the Modern Pentathlon;
•       Temporary Cross Country course being designed for the Park;
•       A temporary main arena has been designed to showcase the Queen’s House and London skyline, and
•       Unique platform created for equestrian events to deliver permanent characteristics in a temporary solution.

LOCOG said that the whole Games will include:

In total, the overlay project for the London 2012 Olympic Games will include:

250,000 temporary seats, 165,000 square meters (yards) of tents, 2,500 cabins, 140 kilometres (87 miles) of fencing and
250 kilometres (155 miles) of crowd barriers.

James Bulley, LOCOG Director of Venues and Infrastructure, said: “The London 2012 Games will deliver what no other Games has before in terms of the complexity and scale of the event overlay and temporary structures needed. Alongside the absolute commitment to meet the Games requirements, central to our plans have been legacy, sustainability, accessibility and safety. Our vision for the London 2012 venues is the integration with London’s historic and iconic landmarks alongside our existing world class stadiums and sporting arenas. Our combined overlay team are world class and will deliver the technical excellence required to make this a spectacular Games.”

Jeff Keas, principal of Populous, said: ‘Sport is at the core of the overlay project, but more than that, we have focused on London as the backdrop. This means ensuring wherever we can that either the historic buildings at venues like Greenwich Park or Lord’s, or the iconic London skyline, remain in sight for spectators whilst creating an intimate atmosphere for the athletes.”