AOC's One Planet Centre relocated from Athletes Village to Newham school
BioRegional pavilion finds second home in legacy move
Last week Footprint attended a ceremony to mark the relocation of AOC’s One Planet Centre from the Athletes Village to The Royal Docks Community School in Newham. Funded by DEFRA with content developed by environmental charity BioRegional, the pavilion was intended to promote sustainability amongst athletes during the Games by encouraging them to save energy and reduce waste.
Headteacher Ruth Martin opened the event, explaining that the pavilion would be used as an outdoor classroom for geography and would host recycling workshops for students.
According to Bioregional programme coordinator Daisy Chen, the pavilion doubled its target audience of 1,000 visitors during the Games, reaching approximately 2,000 athletes, trainers and coaches. One activity at the pavilion encouraged medal winners from the UK, Netherlands and Australia to ‘swap kits’, to promote the reuse of sports tops worn during the Games.
AOC director Geoff Shearcroft explained that the rationale behind the design was to create a ‘little domestic moment’ to relax in the Olympic Park, since this was the only place ‘that did not have CCTV cameras’. A ‘familiar house structure’ was intended to promote the idea that athletes could practice at home the sustainable practices adopted during the Games. The pavilion incorporated reclaimed timber sourced from the Lea Valley, and the deck was made of offcuts from the Olympic Park.
Charity The Legacy List, a joint initiative of LLDC and the Mayor’s office, was responsible for finding the pavilion’s new home. Legacy List chief executive Sarah Weir, formerly Head of Arts and Cultural Strategy for the Olympic Delivery Authority, highlighted the pavilion’s importance in retaining a ‘memory of London 2012’. According to Weir, the Newham school was selected because of its proximity to the Olympic Park and because it had an appropriate open space to house the pavilion.
Bioregional is currently developing strategies to monitor the pavilion’s impact.
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