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2012 Olympic stadium contract up for grabs

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The eagerly-awaited OJEU notice for the flagship 2012 London Olympic stadium has been unveiled.

It is expected that some of the world's biggest names, including Foreign Office Architects, Allies and Morrison and HOK - the practices already involved in the Olympics masterplan - will throw their hats into the ring in a bid to design the new 80,000-seat stadium.

The announcement comes less than a fortnight after the AJ exclusively revealed that the Olympic Delivery Agency (ODA) had prepared a draft tender document for the stadium in the heart of the east London Olympics site (AJ 13.7.06).

A key element of the design will be how the arena can be converted to a 25,000-seat venue after the Games.

The ODA hopes the stadium will become 'the focus of the world media attention' and a 'recognisable landmark'.

The document reads: 'The creation of a stadium of this scale that delivers a powerful image for the Games [with its] innovative use of permanent and temporary forms and provides a cost-effective solution is a critical challenge of this contract.'

Speculation has already started about who else will enter the race to lead 'an integrated design and construction team' - with Norman Foster emerging as an early contender.

Once a design team has been selected, it is expected that the initial concepts will be revealed early next year.

The ODA has pencilled in a completion date in early 2011.

For more details about the contract notice visit www.ted.europa.eu(OJEU number 2006/s 139-149240).

by Richard Waite

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