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London Olympic Site Aims for Sustainability

green london olympics

With the Pan-American Games in Toronto still three years in the future, London, England is setting a high bar in terms of building athletic venues with a green bent.

The 2012 Olympic host has incorporated sustainable building features into the venues that will soon host athletes from around the world. This attention to green detail is included in Olympic constructs ranging from the Olympic swimming pools to the public river walkway.

More impressively, however, the UK city is looking even beyond the games, with a retrofit of the facilities slated to take place even after the games have left.

Once the Olympics are over, the highly-touted Olympic Park will be converted into a community that will hold as many as 8,000 homes which are being designed to be carbon-neutral.

In addition to the housing development planned for the site, the area currently known as the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park will also feature five permanent sporting venues – remnants of the games themselves – as well as a biodiverse habitat stretching across 45 hectares and well-planned green infrastructure that will include a network of pedestrian walkways, waterways and bike routes.

The ambitious plan is outlined in a report released by the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC), who conceived the idea.

olympic park london

 “Our legacy plans are further advanced than any previous host city, this includes working to make sure the future Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park will become a benchmark for sustainable living,” LLDC chief executive Andrew Altman said . “This guide sets out an ambitious plan to not just deliver sustainable parklands, homes and jobs but also to create an environment that drives behavioural change.”

LLDC has taken huge steps in ensuring the project meets high green standards. Among the sustainable guidelines under which they are working, the company is aiming to reduce energy consumption through the construction process by 15 per cent and emissions from the completed development by 25 per cent over the norm.

They will also rely on rainwater and waste harvesting systems and have committed to installing energy-efficient lighting throughout the project.

All of the timber being used in construction will be sustainable, thereby allowing the developers to eliminate 100 per cent of the waste being sent to landfill sites by 2025.

The Olympic Games will shed a spotlight on London in 2012, aiming to show the historic city in all its grandeur. As impressive as the games promise to be, however, LLDC is showing that the city will continue to shine even after the Olympics have come and gone.

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