Sporting legacy secured for six out of eight Olympic venues

The Olympic Park Legacy Company has secured the future of six out of the eight permanent Olympic venues after appointing operators for the Aquatic Centre, Multi-Use Arena and ArcelorMittal Orbit.
 
The company says “employment, training and sporting opportunities for Londoners are at the heart of the contracts, along with ensuring the venues are both affordable and accessible, and fit into the wider offer of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park”.
 
Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) has signed on to operate the Aquatics Centre and the Multi-Use Arena, and Balfour Beatty WorkPlace will run the ArcelorMittal Orbit and manage the maintenance of the Park.
 
The contracts include 254 full-time jobs with 75 per cent going to local people in the host boroughs; 86 apprenticeship places every year; “strong focus” on SMEs benefitting from supply chain opportunities; and the price of swimming at the Aquatics Centre or hiring a court at the Arena will be the same as local pool or sport centres.
 
“The combination of Balfour Beatty WorkPlace’s commitment to jobs and apprenticeships and GLL’s innovative proposals for sports programming will create a host of economic and sporting opportunities,” said Baroness Margaret Ford of the Olympic Park Legacy Company.
 
GLL will operate the Aquatics Centre and Multi-use Arena for 10 years starting in 2013. The social enterprise currently oversees the management of over 100 public leisure centres across the south of England and in York, employing 5,000 people, all locally recruited.
 
Balfour Beatty Workplace also has a 10-year contract.
 
Ford says the contract ensures the Aquatics Centre will not require any additional public subsidy and that further revenue will be generated from naming rights for both venues.
 
The company hopes to have secured new operators for all the venues before the Games have started later in the year. Achieving it would be a first for any Olympic city.
 
UK Prime Minister David Cameron said: “As Ministers visit Olympic venues, businesses, schools and organisations associated with 2012 right across the UK, I want the message to go out loud and clear, from tourism to business, sport to investment, we are determined to maximise the benefits of 2012 for the whole country.
 
“As we mark 200 days to go, and six out of the eight Olympic venues having already secured their future, we are well on track to delivering a lasting legacy for the whole of Britain.”
 
The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park will reopen in phases from 2013 following major transformation work to change the Park from its Olympic configuration to a new piece of London.
 
The Multi-Use Arena is set to reopen in 2013, with the Aquatics Centre and the ArcelorMittal Orbit reopening in 2014.
 
Any conference-related news? Email sarah@mashmedia.net

Paul Colston

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Paul Colston

Managing Editor, Conference News & Conference & Meetings World.

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