Club sought to fill Olympic stadium

London's showpiece Olympic stadium may eventually be bulldozed if no football club takes up the offer to make its home in east London, it emerged this week.

London 2012 chief executive Keith Mills, revealing plans for prospective London Olympic sites this week, said that the bid team has been in negotiations with "most football clubs" in east London but refused to confirm which ones have been approached about taking residency in the stadium after 2012.

The proposed 80,000-seat stadium, which would be located on Marshgate Lane at the northern end of the Lower Lea Valley site, could survive with a reduced capacity. But masterplan team leader EDAW is working to a brief that stipulates that sporting venues will only be retained if they have an economically viable future.

Tony Winterbottom, executive director of regeneration and development at the London Development Agency, disclosed that alternative options could include "a vibrant residential scheme" or a "wonderful leisure project with a school attached".

The bid team announced that its plans include a 200ha Olympic precinct to be set in 600ha of parkland stretching from Hackney Marshes to the River Thames. Mills claimed that it would be the largest urban park to be created in Europe for more than 200 years.

A 50m swimming pool accommodating 20,000 spectators is planned alongside a 5,000-seat venue for diving, both of which will be built regardless of the outcome of the bid. A velodrome and a multi-sport complex comprising three indoor sports arenas at Hackney Wick are also in the pipeline.

The Olympic Village, next to Stratford International rail terminal, would house 17,000 athletes and be sold off for housing after the games.


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