2012 London Olympic Stadium by Populous


2012 London Olympic Stadium by Populous

Here are some photos of the completed 2012 London Olympic Stadium designed by Populous.

2012 London Olympic Stadium by Populous

Construction was completed this week and the 80,000-seat stadium will now be prepared with a running track, scoreboards and gantries before a test event in May next year.

2012 London Olympic Stadium by Populous

According to the Olympic Delivery Authority construction is complete three months ahead of schedule and cost £10 million less that the original estimate.

2012 London Olympic Stadium by Populous

The design was unveiled in 2007 by HOK Sport (now known as Populous) - see our story here.

2012 London Olympic Stadium by Populous

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2012 London Olympic Stadium by Populous

Photographs are by Morley von Sternberg, courtesy Populous.

2012 London Olympic Stadium by Populous

Here's a tiny bit of text from Populous:

29th March 2011 marks the completion of the construction contract at the Olympic Stadium where the last piece of turf is being laid by ODA Chairman John Armitt.

2012 London Olympic Stadium by Populous

Rod Sheard, Senior Principal at Populous, the Stadium architect said: “The construction of the world’s most environmentally friendly Olympic Stadium has taken just over 1,000 days, in the world of major construction it could be considered a sprint, its completion marks the beginning of the end of the construction phase of London’s Olympic Games. We can now all look forward to just under 500 days of the final preparation to when the world will see this innovative design perform for the first time.”

2012 London Olympic Stadium by Populous

Above image is courtesy ODA

See also:


London 2012 Velodrome
by Hopkins Architects
London Gate
by Donis
Wenlock and Mandeville
by iris

Posted on Thursday March 31st 2011 at 8:12 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • NicktheGreek

    You can tell it was completed three months ahead of schedule and 10 million below budget…

    • OSS

      a year and 3 months before the games ;)

  • Is this perhaps the first Olympic stadium to be completed on-time and on-budget in recent memory?

  • dull, rather boring, dull, for the money spent: dull, rather boring. let me repeat it:dull, rather boring, dull, for the money spent: dull, rather boring. but maybe they're right, the olympics are about sports and not about buildings.

  • The "triangular lighting towers" are quite original. In the stadiums I usually see square panels of lights, not triangles.

  • JuiceMajor

    Cheapest stadium ever…I think after this, London will never get to be the host again. Compare to China, UK is just plain cheap!

    • samuel

      I totally agree with you. In a time where there's money everywhere, the naturals resources are abundant, all investors in the world are willing to invest this is a trully poor stadium. Why didn't they cover those beams in gold? i lol'd

    • Leon Clark

      You’re so wrong – this isn’t ‘cheap’ but ‘realistic’, and probably one of the most efficient stadiums ever built. Unlike many other stadia, this one can be reduced in size to accommodate its future use after the Games are over. So often we see overblown buildings created with overblown budgets (e.g. Beijing) ending up being neglected or underused. Here in Britain, we are justly proud of ensuring either permanency of Olympic venues, or a good recycling system for future use. Not many places can say that, not even in the good ol’ USA.

  • Manuel

    It is obviously a boring and uninteresting building. But on the other hand it was cheap and fast. Architects who love architecture should also learn to be cheap and fast – or in other words, "efficient", and so we could regain society's respect. There is no justificacion for expending more money from the taxpayers than the necessary, and for arriving late.

    • NicktheGreek

      The most efficient form of building is the shed. But then not everyone wants to spend their lives in a shed…

      • BillL

        the most efficient form of building is the geodesic dome

      • chadd

        PS no one has to live here.

  • daveypodmore

    Personally I think its a refreshing approach to an Olympic stadium design. Its light and magestic. London certainly didn't need to create a mamouth 'look at us' stadium that then stands empty, sad and souless like China. This stadium has some lovely detailing and should be applauded. Creating stadiums on this scale opens the games up to other cities, its more relevant to the times we live in, well done London.

    • Max

      "Empty sad and soulless as in China"? I happen to be of the opinion that even the Chinese have the right to landmarks, and this was the ultimate goal of the National Stadium in Beijing. Perhaps it is an ostentatious stadium, but it has become a symbol for the entire country, albeit totalitarian.

      That said, I am all for London's new "Lean Machine" and when our rivers have run dry, our forests have turned into deserts and our atmosphere is too polluted too breathe, who will stand up for their right to build stadiums like that?

  • Matthew

    Boring and uninteresting? The stadium has designed to eke out the maximum on a number of levels for all those who will be using it for the minimum cost, space and use of materials.

    Simply compare the amount of steel used between Beijing and London and see how much smaller the physical and carbon footprint with the latter for the same specification and nominally less seats.

    Fantastic monuments may make an impact but great Architecture should also be about user interaction with the space and efficiency of design.

  • MylesG

    Except it doesn't have the hole-in-the-ground, underground stages that Lillehammer, Atlanta, Athens and Beijing had. It will make for very dull Opening and Closing ceremonies.

    • because those are of course the most important parts of olympic games?

      It's an excellent stadium. Efficient design and with a legacy rather than just rusting like the birdsnest.

  • Rosengold

    BayArena anyone?
    http://img195.imageshack.us/img195/6932/bayarena…. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c

    but i like it nevertheless, its a clean funktional stadium, i don't think the sport is better in an crazy over budget birds nest.

  • Rosengold

    BayArena anyone?

  • EuroRover

    fFunctionality = The New Black

  • soctane

    If London didn't need to create a 'look at me' venue, then London probably didn't need to host yet another Olympics. But then again, after the outrageous spending in places like Beijing, Athens, and Montreal, the Olympics probably needed this more than London did.

  • teefs

    As olympic stadiums go, this is undeniably drab, particularly in comparison to Herzog and De Meuron's Beijing "Bird's Nest". It's like it's missing its facade. However, some of the comments here are very wrong in regard to costs. I can provide a detailed comparison with this building, but did you know that the Bird's Nest stadium actually came in at about a quarter of the cost of Wembley? No bull – the main reasons for this were: i). the low cost steel fabrication due to the local shipbuilding industry, and ii). the low cost of the labour force, who have none of the legal rights of European workers. Beijing needed an icon. Their only internationally recognisable icon was Tiananmen (Forbidden Palace), and that has some rather negative associations; London already has Big Ben, Tower Bridge, St Pauls, and post-GFC an expensive new icon would just seem wasteful. This is a drab building, but socially and politically I think it's the right building.

  • Carpe Diem

    Ultimately, a structure should do or reflect, how it looks, so if it folds up like a camping chair and moves to another site then fine, it's a great building. If it's going to sit there for three generations looking like that, it's a dud. Noone wants monuments to money or power, but frankly, London doesn't need another Millenium Dome either.

  • Mohsen Gh

    Architecture should move with time.Personally, I think in comparison with Beijing stadium, it'snot fantastic.

  • Zee man

    Love it,
    Thank god they're not doing water cubes and birds nest. Guess they dont have small appendage syndrome.

  • mario

    Honestly the project looks great, but if they wanted to save money and time, why don´t they use any of the existing stadiums in London for the Olympics?

  • archi

    Last I heard the Bird's Nest had become a useless expensive white elephant. So saving some money might be a good idea. And I like the somewhat austere, certainly efficient, design. Well done London.

  • John

    Love it. Three months early, tax refund.

  • matt

    architecture is not just about creating some precious jewel. note that china evicted thousands of people from their homes to build their stadium. This is architecture that responds to the real life problems.

  • Both the Bird’s Nest and the London Olympic Stadium are appropriate symbols of different economic situations and goals. Four years ago, Beijing’s ambition was to put forth an impressive face to the world community and thus advance their status of legitimacy as an economic leader. Europe’s current monetary troubles call for dignified but practical austerity as aptly displayed by the new London Stadium.

  • The brilliant 'Birds Nest' that everyone seems to love is empty for 95% of the year…
    Not such a brilliant piece of architecture if it isn't used for it's main function, let alone anything else

  • awake


  • michelle

    It’s so cheap because they plan to blow it up. Why spend money on a doomed project? NWO symbolism all over it, yuk.

  • chadd

    Coming from an architecture student’s point of view: its kinda cool. Reminds me of Konrad Wachsmann, airplane hangar (early-1950s) which by the way is a very important project in architectural history.

    Check yourself before you wreck yourself.