Take another journey
When London won the bid to host the London 2012 Olympic & Paralympic Games, the victory was based on more than a promise to deliver a magical sporting event – it was also based on a pledge to leave a lasting legacy for communities through the regeneration of east London
The future Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is the strongest emblem of this legacy and when the Park begins to reopen in summer/autumn 2013, it will offer the best in sporting and cultural amenities in world-renowned venues and parkland, as well as five new neighbourhoods of up to 11,000 new homes.
One Park, two distinct characters
By 2016 the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is expected to attract 9.3 million visitors per annum. The southern area of the Park will be focused on urban entertainment and will be anchored by the Stadium, the Aquatics Centre and the UK’s tallest sculpture and the Park’s first attraction – the ArcelorMittal Orbit. Over time, the area will become home to a range of additional attractions, as well as providing a rolling programme of cultural, sporting and community events.
The river valley in the north of the Park is aimed at local families and will be centred around the Velodrome, a new business district around the broadcast centre and press centre, waterways, landscaped parklands and entertainment lawns.
Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park sits at the centre of the largest regeneration initiative in the developed world, with more than £12.5bn of private and public sector investment in the Stratford area. By 2020, Stratford will be home to Europe’s largest urban shopping centre, Westfield Stratford City (which opened in September 2011), the £1.3bn Lendlease office development, the 2,800-home Athletes’ Village and five Olympic and Paralympic venues.
Standing 114.5m tall and changing the perspectives of Londoners and the world towards east London, the ArcelorMittal Orbit is a symbol of this transformation.
A new attraction for London
After the London 2012 Olympic & Paralympic Games, the ArcelorMittal Orbit will attract up to one million visitors per year and will join the ranks of world-famous structures such as the Statue of Liberty and the Eiffel Tower.
It will directly contribute to the growth of the area, creating jobs, bringing tourism revenue into the east London economy and helping to establish Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park as one of London’s top-10 visitor destinations.
“Our ambition was to turn the [Olympic] site into a place of destination, a must-see item on the tourist itinerary,” says London Mayor Boris Johnson. “We believe the ArcelorMittal Orbit will help us to achieve that aim.”
The ArcelorMittal Orbit also stands as a constant symbol of the teamwork, effort and achievement that London’s Olympic and Paralympic bid hoped to encourage in young people.
Its designers – Anish Kapoor and Cecil Balmond – provided the aspiration and vision for the ArcelorMittal Orbit. ArcelorMittal – in partnership with Watson Steel, which built the tower – has turned that vision into a reality.