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maarc gelos

Portsmouth, England, United Kingdom


Member since January 05, 2013

  • Newport International Group Barcelona Spain, London 2012: Has Britain made the most of its Olympic legacy?

    Community, Communication Design


    London 2012: Has Britain made the most of its Olympic legacy?

    Forty-six weeks on from the Games he said school sport, the economy, volunteering and the main Olympic venues had all made a good start.

    But he acknowledged, rightly, that there is still a long way to go.

    As London's Olympic Stadium prepares to welcome back big crowds for the Anniversary Games this weekend, it is inevitable that people will ask questions about whether London 2012 is on track to deliver on its legacy promises.

    It is worth remembering that no Olympic host city has ever tried to do what London is doing.

    Sydney wasted the best part of a decade working out what to do with the Olympic Park at Homebush while Barcelona's use of the iconic diving pool and aquatics centre for this week's World Championships is a notable one off. Beijing's Olympic Stadium is essentially a tourist attraction.

    So, to sell out the Olympic Stadium for three days exactly one year on from the London Games is a real achievement.

    As I took the all too familiar walk from Westfield to the stadium earlier this week it was impossible to miss the amount of work already completed or under way.

    The temporary stands bolted on to architect Zaha Hadid's aquatics centre have been removed revealing the venue in all its curvaceous beauty. One side is partially glazed and when finished it's sure to become the iconic building on the Olympic Park (yes, even better than the velodrome).

    As you approach the stadium you have to walk through a building site. There can't be a clearer message of how London has not wasted any time in transforming the park.

    Once inside the stadium it feels like the last 12 months never happened. The Olympic cauldron and the flags have gone, of course, but it is still an inspiring place and packed with 80,000 people it is sure to revive memories of those thrilling days and nights last summer.

    This will be the last time the stadium looks like this. After the summer work will begin on turning it into West Ham's new home. And with the other seven venues on the park now moving into legacy mode, there is little room for nostalgia.

    But while the venues and the park might be making good progress, concerns over the 'soft' legacy - the task of transforming our sporting habits - remain.

    Tellingly Coe did not mention participation on the Today programme. That could have simply been a factor of live radio but it may also have reflected the fact that despite the 1.4m increase in adults regularly playing sport since 2005 (when London won the bid to stage the Games) the picture since last summer is mixed.

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