The International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) Coordination Commission is in London inspecting its preparations for the 2012 Summer Olympic Games.
On day one of a three-day visit the 15-member team led by Denis Oswald toured the Olympic Park site in east London as well as other 2012 venues such as Wembley Stadium, and met with London’s new Mayor Boris Johnson.
LOCOG chief executive Paul Deighton said it’s the first time that London has had a chance to properly plan for the Games, although it held the 1908 and 1948 Games at late notice.
He said, “we know the scope of the project and we know what’s required. In 98 days the Olympic Games will close in Beijing and then it’s over to us. We’re ready”.
Canadian Press reports that while work on the Olympic Stadium is set to begin in three months, the athlete’s village is a potential issue of concern. Work is to begin on the village next month without a contract with the constructors.
“We expect to sign interim agreements shortly and aim to have financial arrangements in place before the main build later this year”, said the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA). “The changing economic situation remains a challenge but we remain on program”.
Nearly all of the Olympic Park’s 2.5 square kilometre site has been readied for construction, with work on the aquatics centre to also begin in the next few months.
LOCOG chairman Sebastian Coe said he was determined to deliver the vision at values promised during the bid.
He said, “we have made tremendous progress since the commission was last here and the detailed plans that we continue to make and continue to work to all reflect the vision of using the power of sport to inspire change. Our vision doesn’t just end in four years’ time. We hope it will continue for years to come”.