Future of Stratford’s Olympic Park officially in the hands of Legacy Corporation

A section of the Aquatics Centre’s ‘outer shell’ was removed in front of the world’s press today to mark the official handover of the Olympic Park to the corporation transforming it into a new community.

Industrial abseiler Vicki Tough did the honours to mark the moment the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games (LOCOG) passes the Olympic site in Stratford over to the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) to complete construction.

Over the next 18 months, the LLDC will carry out a �292m programme in three stages: to clear the Games temporary venues such as the waterpolo arena, walkways and stands; to connect the Park to the surrounding commmunities with new roads and pathways; and complete the Park’s venues remaining venues such as the Velodrome and parklands.

They expect around nine million people will visit the new Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park by 2016.

Paul Brickell, the LLDC’s executive director for regeneration and community partnerships, said: “If there’s another mantra, it would be jobs, jobs, jobs.

“It’s the thing that people round here are really clear about is the need for local jobs in an area that needs them.”

The LLDC aim for 40 per cent of construction jobs to go to people living in the surrounding boroughs, creating 12 apprenticeships in the New Year and aiming for 30 in total - with a peak of 1,000 construction workers on the site.

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He also said the LLDC were aiming to deliver 40 per cent affordable housing when the park begins to open in 2013.

Mr Brickell said: “We really need neighbourhoods that work and that’s why we are building schools as well housing.

“The ‘not affordable’ homes are important, too. In east London, people tend to land here and start up but then they move out and we wanted to build places people can afford to buy, too, to meet a range of housing needs.”