There's no question that the 2012 Olympics will be a push towards innovation, technology, architecture, urban design, and sustainability. With just under a year to go until the opening ceremonies to the 2012 olympics, you have to wonder how the designers are addressing some of the concerns in the London infrastructure. According to Archdaily, "The London 2012 Games offers a unique opportunity to revitalize the Lower Lea Valley, transforming one of the most underdeveloped areas of the UK into a benchmark 21st century urban environment that reflects the diverse and lively population of the region."
What baffles me about the Olympics is the ability for it to change the course of a city. I've been to London and I love it. There's no doubt in my mind that I want to go back, I should go back, or that I will eventually go back (perhaps next year for the Olympics). London will almost indefinitely change because of the Olympics and the new infrastructure is the designs greatest asset.
The problem that many cities face is what to do with the park after the games are over. Cities like Sydney, Athens, and Barcelona have simply turned the park into a tourist spot. Since my last visit to Barcelona almost two years ago, I was able to visit the olympic park, now almost 50 years old. My experience was weak, I found the park to be deserted besides the few tourists lurking around.
The solution: after the games, the park will be transformed into one of the largest urban parks created in Europe for the last 150 years."The new park will be connected to the tidal Thames Estuary to the south and the Hertfordshire countryside to the north. The canals and waterways of the River Lea will be cleaned and widened, and the natural floodplains of the area will be restored to provide a new wetland habitat for wildlife, which birdwatchers and ecologists can enjoy." Sounds sustainable if you ask me.
Brandon E. Young