|ExCel Center - London 2012|
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 this bid since 1997. In December 2000 the report was shown to Government ministers.
Following three failed consecutive United Kingdom (UK) bids (Birmingham in 1992 and Manchester in 1996 and 2000), the decision was made to bid with London, given the clear indication that it was the only city in the UK that had a chance of being selected by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) when put up against other world cities in a competitive bidding process. London obviously performed better than Manchester and Birmingham. On 6 July 2005 at its 117th Session in Singapore, the IOC awarded the London Bid with the rights to host the Games of the XXX Olympiad. The city beat out the favorite (Paris 2012) on the fourth and final ballot 54 to 50 and will become the first city to host the Games three times.
At the time of the bid, the budget projection was around £2 billion, but more recently, many are saying that the true cost will be around £9 billion and involves a major regeneration of the Stratford area of London, as well as improvements to surrounding services and associated venues. Public transport, an aspect of the proposal which scored poorly for the bid, will see numerous improvements, including the London Underground and the new "Olympic Javelin" service.
The celebrations were partly silenced the day after the announcement of London's win when the city suffered from a terrorist attack. 7 July 2005 London bombings shut down the public transport system and killed 52 people, injuring hundreds more. There was no confirmed link between the IOC decision and the attack.
Following the success of the bid, the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) was established to oversee the ongoing development of the games. There have been some alterations since the bid was accepted, including the decision by the IOC to eliminate some sporting events and a new layout for the Olympic Zone, both resulting in some relatively minor changes to the 2012 Summer Olympic venues.
Dates and timing
The London 2012 bid proposed that the Games take place between Friday 27 July 2012 and 12 August 2012. This was chosen to coincide with the best weather and with school holidays, on the basis that demands on London's facilities would be less when schools and universities were closed. It also allowed younger people the opportunity to attend the events.
The 2012 Olympics were planned to use a mixture of newly built venues, existing facilities, and temporary facilities, some of them in well known locations such as Hyde Park and Horse Guards Parade. In the wake of the problems that plagued the Millennium Dome, the intention was that there would be no white elephants after the games. Some of the new facilities would be reused in their Olympic form, while others would be reduced in size and several would be relocated elsewhere in the UK. The plans would contribute to the regeneration of Stratford in east London which would be the site of the Olympic Park, and of the neighbouring Lower Lea Valley.
However this would require the compulsory purchase of some businesses and this caused controversy, with some of the business owners claiming that the compensation offered is inadequate. The purchased buildings would be demolished to make way for Olympic venues and infrastructure improvements.
The majority of venues have been divided into three zones within Greater London: the Olympic Zone, the River Zone and the Central Zone. In addition to these are those venues that, by necessity, are outside the boundaries of Greater London.
The IOC noted that future negotiations were necessary to ensure the use of the Old Trafford and Villa Park football stadiums. The need for compulsory purchase orders was also highlighted as a possible problem for the Olympic Park, but did not expect this to cause any "undue delay to construction schedules".
At the time of the bid 60% of the venues and facilities were in place. The remaining venues are proposed to be completed between 2007 and the start of the games. The following are the tentative completion dates for some of the remaining venues: Channel Tunnel/Stratford rail link (2007); Aquatics Centre and London Velopark (2008); East London Line extension (2010); Olympic Stadium and Heathrow's Terminal Five final completion (2011).