Slam dunk for 2012 venue

Niki May Young
Wednesday 18 Mar 2009

Basketball Arena achieves consent

Design proposals for the temporary 2012 Basketball Arena, the third largest venue on the Park, have gained planning permission. The building, designed by a multi-disciplinary team of specialists, will be home to Basketball, the Handball finals, Wheelchair Basketball, Wheelchair Rugby and will become a holding area for athletes for the opening and closing ceremonies.

Sinclair Knight Merz, Wilkinson Eyre and KSS Design Group created the concept designs which were agreed in June 2008 and the planning application was submitted in November. Last week the ODA Planning Committee resolved to approve the application subject to referral to the Government Office for London.

During the Olympic Games the Arena will have 12,000 seats for the Basketball preliminaries and quarter-finals, as well as the Handball semi-finals and finals. During the Paralympic Games it will have a capacity of 10,000 seats for Wheelchair Basketball and Wheelchair Rugby.

The temporary structure was originally located in the west of the Olympic Park just north of the Olympic Stadium. Last year, its location was changed to the former site of the Fencing Hall, in the north of the Park, after Olympic Fencing, Wheelchair Fencing and Paralympic Judo were moved to the ExCeL venue in Docklands. This change enabled the ODA to create more space for the Parklands so spectators can enjoy more of the Park and maximise the use of the other venues.

Basketball Arena Project Sponsor Paul Snoddy said:“The Arena will be one of the largest temporary venues built for any Games and will provide a great experience for spectators and athletes.

“After the Games, two thirds of the materials and elements of the Arena can be reused or recycled, potentially allowing other parts of the UK to benefit from London 2012.”

Most spectators will get to the Basketball Arena through three ‘gateway’ stations – Stratford Regional, Stratford International and West Ham. Spectators will also be able to use a number of walking and cycle routes to reach the Arena.

Key Facts:

United Kingdom
Sport in architecture

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