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London Olimpics Basketball Arena

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Submitted By marian12
Words 2757
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International Strategic Project Management
In –Module assessment – Semester 1 -2011/12
By Sergey Bogdanovich
Basketball Arena


Executive summary

Basketball is one of the major Olympic sports. And Olympic presentation of it should be as good as possible, as millions of people will watch the action from East London closely. They all want an extraordinary exhibition and performance, so the constructions of a top quality Basketball Arena, which will successfully host the games, require a lot of attitude. It is essential to understand that the arena must be a part of an Olympic vision and should address all the proposals and ideas which Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) and London as a capital of Great Britain want to introduce during games and after them. It required a lot of effort, knowledge and an experience to achieve the overall goal in delivering basketball arena. In the end the project become one of the biggest of its type ever built for such an event. Several firms, agencies and organisations worked closely with each other to deliver a successful result on each stage of the project.


The Basketball arena was a unique challenge. It was the first time a 12000 seat temporary arena with a span of almost 100 m had been built in UK. Because of the size, scale, complexity and the cost of the venue, it went through considerable scrutiny, deliberation and change throughout the course of 2006-2009. Location of Basketball arena was changed to the former site of the Fencing hall after Olympic and Paralympics Fencing and Paralympics Judo were moved to Excel venue in Docklands. It will be used for Basketball and Handball. During the Paralympics Games, it will have 10000 seats for wheelchair Basketball and Rugby. It will also be a holding area for athletes and officials for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies. As a temporary venue, it will be taken down after the Games, because there is no long-term need for a venue of this capacity in East London. The area of East London will benefit from permanent Olympic venues, as some of them will be converted to a multi-use indoor sports centres. The construction of arena as a part of London 2012 Olympic vision had six priority themes, which are: Employment and Skills; Equality and Inclusion; Design and Accessibility; Health, Safety and Security; Legacy; Sustainability.

Description of the project

The project of Basketball arena is complex technically and practically. Much work has been done prior start of construction. Many meetings were held and many decisions were made. There were three original options to deliver a venue for basketball, but towards the end of 2009 the ODA was unable to find a viable off-park legacy location capable of satisfying the games requirements. It was therefore decided that the only deliverable option were on-park temporary solution. Several different proposals for a new arena did exist, however due to absence of a firm legacy owner or proposal, the portal frame solution was agreed as the final proposal. The basketball brief stated ‘this project provides the opportunity to define a new standard for temporary venues and will enable a successful design team to deliver a fantastic and innovative solution’.Sinclair Knight Merz, Nussli International, Wilkinson Eyre, and KSS Design were all appointed to design it. The team had to deal with a number of different design challenges, the most important of which were as follows:
1) Delivery of an efficient and resilient temporary, locatable, demountable, reusable structure with a minimum span of 96 m. 2 Defining the performance of a temporary building that still needs to meet ‘World class’ specification and expectations.
3) Appropriate specification of structure to meet design life, wind and snow loadings, dynamic loadings and resilience given the nature of the games event.
4) Meeting sustainability objectives when the venue is only to be used for a number of weeks for test events and the games. 5) Achieving environmental conditions – the venue is designed for a summer event and need not comply with part L of the Buildings Regulations, but the design needs to address issues such as heating, cooling, condensation and acoustic performance.
6) Satisfying town planning, building regulations and other statutory requirements and stakeholder aspirations such as look and feel.
7) Achieving ODA’s priority themes such as accessibility and health and safety (in maintenance and operation as well as construction).
8) Delivering a venue that meets challenging value-for-money and programme requirements. The detailed design therefore had to be done in a way that built in as much flexibility and opportunity for reuse as possible. Figure 1 shows an ‘exploded’ view of the design of the arena. It illustrates the core concept of the venue being designed as the most simple and innovative structure that can then be broken down and delivered literally as a ‘kit of parts’. The end result was a venue with an estimated potential reuse of over 95% by weight and value. The steel frame, wrap, seating stands, seats and associated external modular buildings have all been designed and erected in a way that optimises reuse.
Considerable detailed thought was given to specific reuse measures to avoid waste generation from dismantling the venue. Early engagement with the industry and specialist suppliers in particular proved to be the best way to understand the market capability, optimise designs and efficiencies and identify pragmatic relocation, reuse and recycling options. After the design was ready, on 9th of April 2009 planning permission was granted for the construction of the temporary Basketball Venue. The Olympic Delivery Authority appointed Barr Ltd. to build the new Basketball Arena Structure and Envelope. Construction started towards the end of 2009 and the venue was completed in May 2011 – a total programme of less than 20 months. This compares very favorably with a construction programme for a more traditional permanent venue, which would have taken an estimated 26–28 months. The out-turn cost was £43 million, £15 million less than originally budgeted.

Project and programme issues

Initial Equality Impact Assessment had identified links between the Basketball Arena and the following London 2012 projects: Arts and Culture: workshops and competitions were planned for a Seating colour and external Lighting Business Opportunities: procurement process was developed in line with the ODA’s guidance on equal opportunities statement for access to small and medium sized businesses. LOCOG Catering Operations Team: development of an overlay plan for Food Service Catering adjacent to arena Communications: the coordination of public consultation events has been conducted through the planning process and by the Communication and Project teams. Employment and Skills: 10-12% of construction workers which participate in Construction of the Arena were from five Host Boroughs Equality and Inclusion: the Basketball Arena has been designed so that both spectators and athletes can enjoy the facilities equally, regardless of disability, age, ethnicity, gender, or faith. This meets the aims of Equality and Strategy schemes Health and Safety: risks to health and safety were minimised through “healthy” materials and risk assessment Inclusive Design Standards and Strategy: arena has been designed in compliance with ODA Inclusive Design Standards. Meetings with Built Environment Access Panel (BEAP) and Access and Inclusion Forum (AIF) were completed. Landscape and Public Realm: coordination meetings held to clarify scope for venue team and landscape team. Legal: legal Team was involved in procurement and planning teams’ procedure. Lighting Strategy: internal and external lighting were designed to comply with broadcast requirements and to provide safe and adequate external lights levels. Power Line Undergrounding (PLUG): close coordination with EDF and National Grid were required to confirm the design of structures in close proximity to the plug tunnels. Procurement: ODA, Delivery Partner, and contractor work closely together on all procurement activities. Security and Logistics: mitigation strategies that tackle vulnerabilities were identified through consultation. Structures Bridges and Highways: meetings held with CLM Project Managers Sustainability: design has been coordinated with ODA sustainability team and external sustainability stakeholders, so it allow for over two thirds in monetary value of the materials and elements of the arena to be reused or recycled. Transport: Stratford Regional, Stratford International and West Ham stations will provide access to arena. Number of walking and cycle routes established. Venues Team: all designs have been coordinated with LOCOG to provide the overlay requirements during the Games time. Way finding and Signage Strategy: coordination with the way finding and Signage Strategy had assisted in informing the exterior signage around the venue. London Olympics basketball arena is a part of Olympic project (Appendix 1), which itself contains smaller projects. It did pass through all the sages of project management and successfully followed the route identified. The delivery of an arena was made quick and easy as an effect of good project management. Throughout the design process the following consultation events were held on to discuss the Basketball arena. The comments received from these events were considered by the project team and where relevant, led to changes in the design. Planning Update brochure to ensure local residents were informed of the plans for the Basketball Arena by developing a Planning Update brochure. This was distributed to 51,000 residents in the London Borough of Newham around the perimeter of the Olympic Park. The update provided information on the latest plans for the Arena and included information on the planning process and information on how residents could provide comment on the plans: No feedback was received from the local community. An event for technical stakeholders was held on 29th July 2008. The Basketball team presented the designs for discussion in the workshop.
Stakeholder engagement process began in May 2008, where a wide range of stakeholders were engaged and involved through group briefings and workshops. The stakeholders included technical and statutory consulters, government organisations, and the five Host Boroughs (fHB) representatives. The participants in the stakeholder engagement process included meetings with: Joint Co-ordination Group, Members of the ODA Planning Development Team, ODA Town Planning Promoter Team (TPPT), Representatives from the planning teams from the fHBs, Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment (CABE) Design Review Panel at Royal Institute of British Architects, Built Environment Access Panel Access and Inclusion Forum.

Lessons learned from previous games

In a report prepared for the London Assembly, A Lasting Legacy (University of East London, 2007), UEL highlighted: “It is especially useful to learn from Barcelona how best to achieve legacy momentum. According to the research, it is essential that the Games complement an existing regeneration plan. Secondly, the knowledge base employed in the preparation and the staging of the Games must not be dispersed at the end of the event, but used to promote further innovation. Thirdly, any negative consequences of Games-related regeneration must be addressed in subsequent urban development.”
Employment effects were ‘mostly marked during the games but the long term unemployment and local communities were largely unaffected by the staging of the Games. There is little evidence of volunteer skills transferring to the post-Games economy. In Atlanta some poorer neighbourhoods were re-located to make way for Games facilities leaving a legacy of bad feeling. The sale of housing post-Sydney was hailed as achieving premium prices, however, there was no opportunity for affordable housing and the resulting ownership was perceived to have contributed to gentrification of the area. Even in Barcelona, there is little evidence that local communities shared in any housing benefit. But all the communities do take a sense of pride in staging the Games. There is a growing awareness of the danger of a ‘white elephant’ syndrome (permanent buildings become abandoned after the events) and legacy plans have had to include post-Games uses into the thinking about initial conception, design and delivery of Olympic facilities and associated infrastructure, in terms of buildings, IT, governance, city brand management, post Games maintenance contracts. Cambridge Policy Consultants research following 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games identified a number of legacy issues which are relevant to London: the capacity to stage large scale high profile events has been enhanced; business tourism levels to Manchester had a step change following the Games; venues were refurbished and the planned transfer of Games Stadium to Manchester City FC has been accompanied by provision for greater community use; there have been improvements in mainstream services because of the
Practices developed for the Commonwealth Games, particularly for street cleaning and dressing and transport operations. However, some of the outcomes reflect the potential weaker aspects of the Olympic Games legacy, such as: no sustained uptake of sports participation, limited impact on local unemployment and inactivity rates, directly from the Games, a small legacy of a few hundred volunteers left out of the 10,000 which participated in the Games; while Manchester as a whole has reaped the development benefits of a much stronger market image, East Manchester has not yet secured the successive investment to secure the development. Related to this, the proposed extension of the Metro link through the site and out into the North East of Greater Manchester has also not yet been approved. The major issues for London arising from these lessons are: It is not yet evidenced that the routes through which increased global visibility, investment in infrastructure, community interest and pride in hosting the Games leads to social and economic benefits in terms of re-branding, community engagement, sports participation and health and regeneration. Without theories of change which establish cause and affect it is difficult to attribute benefits solely to staging the Games. In most cases, the question of what additional benefits the staging of the Games brings over and above the investment in infrastructure is not addressed. Leadership with a key risk-bearer, a separate operating company, and a governance framework that translates design and planning into delivery is strength in delivering the Games. At present there are a number of potential players for this role in London (Greater London Assembly, London Development Agency (LDA) and Thames Gateway), and there is, as yet, only limited evidence of the potential transition from Olympic investment to successor programmes. The LDA is already working with other partners, such as London Thames Gateway Development Corporation, and local boroughs, to integrate the Olympic legacy programme with the wider regeneration strategy for Lower Lea Valley (LLV), and with the development strategies for local town centres through a series of fringe studies. The Legacy Master Plan framework will be a key driver in ensuring effective integration of the Olympic Park site with the wider LLV. LDA and the ODA have made a joint commitment through the Commitment to Regeneration document.

Conclusion and recommendation

Ultimately, the team has delivered a 12 000 capacity temporary venue that both looks iconic and meets a very tough performance specification not just for the sports it will host, but also in terms of aesthetic quality, accessibility and sustainability. The experience of the Basketball Arena mirrors many of the challenges and successes across the project in delivering a significant programme of permanent and temporary venues to create a world-class stage for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and a lasting legacy for London, the industry and for future host cities. ODA should continue to work hard on delivering the proposed venues and hosting the games in the summer. I believe the offers should be made now for a redevelopment of some sites after the game as it is most important to save the achieved development and gained knowledge after the games.

Figure 1[pic]


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