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Olympic Park project moves closer


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No, they haven't put the roof on the stadium, just yet...

The first stages of work on a new Olympic Park for the 2012 Games in London have been given the go-ahead.

A contractor has been appointed to build massive tunnels which will replace overhead power lines that cut across a swathe of east London.

Two power tunnels will be constructed 20m` underground

The larger tunnel, which is 4m in diameter, is on the same scale as a London tube tunnel

It will have its own monorail running down the middle for inspection and servicing

LDA Olympic Delivery Committee Lord Swraj Paul announced J Murphy & Sons Limited as the power lines tunnel contractor.

"Undergrounding these power lines is a huge project, creating tunnels equivalent to more than half the length of the Victoria Line," he said.

"It will completely transform the feel of this area and underlines the tremendous impact that hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games will have on east London."


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I travel to work via the Docklands light railway and the being set up throughout the Custom House, Canning Town  and the Stratford areas. I wondered at the time what they were drilling for, but now I realise that theses sights were directly next to the overhead electricity pilons

Even if the Games had never been awarded to London, this is a progressive development for the East End. The pilons are a real blot on the landscape and sure are UGLY.

Looks like they started making preparations a long time ago for this. Glad to see it happening  :D

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(some of my text was deleted...sorry) It should read:

I travel to work via the Docklands light railway and the Silverlink Metro. About six months ago I started to see drilling rigs being set up throughout the Custom House, Canning Town and Stratford areas.

I wondered at the time what they were drilling for, but now I realise that theses sights were directly next to the overhead electricity pilons

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Wow - great pics, Rob.  Gives you some appreciation of how the venues are laid out better with the overhead shots.

On Topic: So am I right that they are going to generate the power needed for the Olympic Zone, by going underground, rather than having these Pylons on the ground?

They did the same thing with the power lines at Sydney Olympic Park _ after NBC's Dick Ebersol suggested that massive power lines wouldn't look good on the TV images.

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Looks good so far. However, isn't baseball/softball out for 2012? Never mind on where the BMX events are going to be held because it was accepted for 2008 by the IOC. Unless, it will be a "one-wonder" events just for 2008 here.
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  • 1 month later...

Olympic Park views have 'wow' factor

By John Inverdale

At some point during the course of this morning, Her Majesty the Queen will get in a lift in the east end of London. Her eye may well be caught by a poster on an adjacent noticeboard advertising keep-fit classes for the over 60s. (The whole issue of how the Queen has kept so fit is perhaps an interesting debating point, but for another time.)

She may well press the button for the 31st floor although, more likely, she'll have someone to do that for her. Plus, given the fact that it's floor 31, she may not be able to reach anyway.

When she gets out at the top, she'll turn right, minding a ridiculously high step that would deceive many of us who don't have a few flunkies to alert us to the dangers, and she'll then set foot on the roof of a high-rise block of sheltered accommodation that is like no other in the country. As she surveys her kingdom, she'll probably point out nearby Upton Park to those around her, and then she'll turn to look straight out over London's embryonic Olympic Park. And if the weather is like it was on Monday, when I was lucky enough to take the same lift and see the same view - with the sky a crystal blue and a full sweep of London's magnificent landmarks glistening in the sunshine - she will surely say 'Wow', or whatever reigning monarchs say on such occasions.

It was a close call as to which took the breath away more - looking down, vertigo stricken, at the streets of Stratford several hundred feet below, or looking out across Britain's potential sporting nirvana. But I'd give it to the Olympic Park by a short head. If you closed your eyes you could see a day, in July 2012, when the eyes of the world are focused on a load of run down former railway sidings, transformed into a symbol of a vibrant Britain where sport is an integral part of the social and political agenda. In a John Lennon-obsessed week, imagine there's a stadium. It's easy if you try. We all left that roof top energised and uplifted by the thought of what Seb Coe and his team can achieve over the next seven years.

By a quirk of fate, just two days earlier I'd been in China, filming the World's Strongest Man. (Don't laugh. You know you'll be watching when it gets to new year.) The moment you land in the world's most populous nation - just the 1.6 billion in case you were wondering -every baggage trolley at the airport proudly announces that Beijing is next in to bat.

The Chinese capital is cast as a torch bearer for a nation that will ambush every television on this earth in three years' time. It is a city that is reinventing itself at the speed of light, producing skyscrapers out of nothing and opening yet another deluxe hotel in the time it takes you to work out how to get into your mini-bar. The local film industry is booming. The Chinese fashion world is buoyant. You get the feeling that down every backstreet potential gold medallists are being nurtured in centres of sporting excellence.

And yet, oddly enough, on the evidence of our admittedly brief trip, sport plays a relatively insignificant part in the daily life of your average Chinese. We were in a city called Chengdu, which you've probably never heard of and so may be surprised to learn is actually bigger than London. What was interesting, though, travelling round China's fourth-largest city in a succession of taxis driven by wannabe Colin McRaes, was the almost total absence of anyone kicking or hitting a ball in the streets. Even the odd overgrown tennis court would have been a welcome sign of sporting activity, and not a single table tennis ball or shuttlecock did we spy.

True, there was a Manchester United outlet in the market, and the strongmen were mobbed by people who had probably never seen anything on that scale save for a Tibetan yak, but it didn't feel like a society with sport at its heart. As a consequence, whether the Beijing Olympics will be a celebration of sport or, more likely, a political and economic calling card to the world, is a moot point. Of one thing you can be sure, though. They will be the most spectacular and brilliantly staged games ever, raising the bar for organisation and facilities. And then it will be our turn.

So how will we follow that? By showing how much we actually care about sport - and we'll care even more when one central defender from London, John Terry, emulates another, Bobby Moore, and leads England to World Cup victory next summer. (I've had the bet.) But even the day of Sven's victorious open-topped bus parade will be dwarfed by the overwhelming sense of pride when the 2012 Games kick off.

The site is sitting there, a deserted brown landscape awaiting an invasion of JCBs. If you have the chance, I really do recommend that you take a camera and go to have a look. Keep the pictures and then, in seven years' time, when you're watching either in person or on the television, you will realise the enormity of our achievement. And you'll go 'Wow'... just like HRH will today.


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