The international design competition called for a proposal which had the strength and character to be transformed into a full scale Olympic venue and then, after the games, back into a highly valuable asset for the local community. The basic conundrum lies in rationalising the rather extreme, short term demands of the Olympic Event and the comparatively modest, long-term needs of the community.
In fully embracing issues associated with both site and programme, the distinctive design proposal takes the form of a modulated architectural landscape which strives to blur the distinction between the traditional buildings and their parkland surroundings.
The unique form of the protective roof canopy stretches over both the extensive pool deck and spectator areas, embodying the balance, vitality and strength that we associate with modern sport, whilst providing an appropriate response to the changing demands of operation, programme and climate. Emerging from the landscape the roof is a defining element in both the project and the overall identity of the Olympic Park, complementing rather than competing with the much larger neighbour the Olympic Stadium.
London Development Agency
Behnisch, Behnisch & Partner