Olympic bosses challenged over 2012 Games venue reopening

Olympic sports facilities must reopen as soon as possible once the Games are over, a London Assembly member has said.

Conservative Andrew Boff challenged Legacy Company bosses to reveal when the public will have access to the 2012 venues once the sports extravaganza concludes.

Speaking at a plenary session of the Assembly, he said: “It’s no good saying that the 2012 Olympics will provide a sporting legacy for London, and then have the facilities locked for up to three years – as has been suggested – to allow time for modifications before public use.

“All momentum will be lost.”

Legacy Company chief executive Andrew Altman said there would be a staggered process of reopening, which would begin in 2013.

He suggested the velodrome could reopen that year, but the Aquatics Centre would probably not be ready until 2014.

West Ham United have already said they plan to move into the Olympic Stadium for the beginning of the 2014-15 football season.

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Speaking after the exchange, Mr Boff said: “Up to a point I am encouraged by the reassurances I have heard today. I completely understand that reconfigurations will have to be made.

“However, I want to ensure that the public has access to these fantastic sporting facilities as soon as possible.

“Let’s face it – the public paid for them, so they should be able to get their hands on them ASAP. All the time the infrastructure is sitting idle it’s not generating money – it’s costing the taxpayer.”