Six out of eight permanent Olympic venues have had their future secured after the Olympic Park Legacy Company appointed operators for the Aquatics Centre, Multi-Use Arena and ArcelorMittal Orbit.

Employment, training and sporting opportunities for Londoners are at the heart of the contracts, along with ensuring that the venues are both affordable and accessible, and fit into the wider offer of the future Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) will operate the Aquatics Centre and the Multi-Use Arena, and Balfour Beatty WorkPlace will run the ArcelorMittal Orbit and manage the maintenance of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

The contracts include:

  • 254 full time jobs
  • 410 apprenticeships over the lifetime of the contracts
  • That on average, 75% of jobs from the two contracts will go to local people in the Host Boroughs
  • A strong focus on small and medium sized enterprises benefitting from supply chain opportunities
  • The price of swimming at the Aquatics Centre or hiring a court at the Arena will be the same as the average local pool or sports centre.

By combining two venues in one contract, the Legacy Company has also ensured that the Aquatics Centre will not require any additional public subsidy as the Arena will cross subsidise it. Further revenue will be generated from naming rights for both venues, which will be on offer at a later date.

With the appointments of anchor tenants and events for the Stadium and the Press Centre and Broadcast Centre this summer, London is on course to secure the future use of every permanent venue before the Games have even started – a first for any Olympic City.

Baroness Margaret Ford, Chair of the Olympic Park Legacy Company, said:

“GLL and Balfour Beatty WorkPlace will play a key part in creating a Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park that is a thriving visitor destination with world-class sporting venues that are both affordable and accessible to the public.

“The combination of Balfour Beatty WorkPlace’s commitment to jobs and apprenticeships, and GLL’s innovative proposals for sports programming will create a host of economic and sporting opportunities.

“Today’s appointments are just another example of how London’s legacy plans are further ahead than any previous host Olympic City. By working closely with sporting bodies and our local communities now, we can ensure that these venues will have a full and compelling programme of activities for when they reopen after the Games.”

The Prime Minister, David Cameron, said:

“As we kick off 2012, the year of the Olympic and Paralympic Games and the Diamond Jubilee, this is the perfect time for the Cabinet to come together and ensure we are doing absolutely everything we can to make the most of this unique opportunity to showcase all the great things the UK has to offer to the rest of the world.

“As Ministers visit Olympic venues, businesses, schools and organisations associated with 2012 right across the UK, I want the message to go out loud and clear, from tourism to business, sport to investment, we are determined to maximise the benefits of 2012 for the whole country.

“Today, as we mark 200 days to go, and six out of the eight Olympic venues having already secured their future, we are well on track to delivering a lasting legacy for the whole of Britain.”

Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said:

“This is a ringing endorsement of our 2012 legacy and regeneration plans for east London and an amazing achievement by the Legacy Company. To find operators to take over these world-class facilities so far ahead of the Games and to secure their commitment to spread jobs and opportunities throughout the local communities is the icing on the 2012 cake.

“We can now start the run in to a fantastic year of celebration with huge pride and optimism that London will stage a great Games, delivering lasting sustainable benefits long after the athletes have departed.”

Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport, Jeremy Hunt, said:

“It’s all go for London 2012, and today’s announcement shows the Games will leave a real and lasting legacy. These world-class sports venues will be opened up to both the public and elite athletes to use post-Games, while the ArcelorMittal Orbit will stand as an iconic London attraction. With operators for six of the eight permanent Olympic venues secured we are on track to have the future of the entire Park finalised before the Games begin.”

Aquatics Centre and Multi-Use Arena

Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) will operate the Aquatics Centre and Multi-Use Arena for 10 years starting in 2013. The social enterprise currently oversees the management of over 100 public leisure centres across the south of England and in York, employing around 5,000 people, all locally recruited.

Mark Sesnan, Managing Director of London-based GLL, said:

“We are delighted to have been awarded the contract to manage the 2012 Aquatics Centre and Multi-Use Arena post-2012. Our charitable social enterprise status, community values and successful track record, demonstrate that GLL is committed to opportunity for all, ensuring the Games offer a long-lasting sporting legacy all Londoners can enjoy. We look forward to working in partnership with the Legacy Company to deliver world-class legacy facilities.”

With an anticipated 800,000 visitors a year, the Aquatics Centre will be a thriving community asset open to all where individuals, families, people with disabilities, school children and the UK’s best sporting talent can all swim and train under the same roof.

Richard Lewis, Chair of Sport England, which invested £35 million of Lottery funding into the Aquatics Centre, said:

“The appointment of an excellent operator in GLL is another key step in securing a sustainable future for these venues beyond the Games.

“Sport England looks forward to working with the Legacy Company and GLL to help develop their plans for community use, ensuring these world-class facilities provide a lasting legacy of increased participation at grassroots level, as well as hosting major events for many years to come.”

The Legacy Company and GLL are also working with a host of National Governing Bodies for sport, including British Swimming, Sport England, England Netball, the British Wheelchair Basketball Association and England Basketball, to ensure that the programming meets the requirements for athlete training.

The Multi-Use Arena will be a multi-purpose sport and entertainment venue where the public can play a wide range of sports including basketball, wheelchair basketball, handball, volleyball, netball, judo, boxing, badminton and gymnastics.

As the third largest arena in London, it can also host concerts, shows, exhibitions and conferences, along with major sporting events. It is anticipated it will attract around 400,000 visitors a year.

Estates Facility Management and ArcelorMittal Orbit

Balfour Beatty Workplace will manage the maintenance of the Park, known as Estates Facility Management (EFM), and the ArcelorMittal Orbit, for 10 years from 2013. Balfour Beatty Workplace is a market leading facilities management company committed to developing opportunities for jobs and training. Where necessary, Balfour Beatty Workplace will hire in the necessary expertise to ensure that the ArcelorMittal Orbit becomes one of London’s foremost visitor attractions, and that revenues are maximised.

Balfour Beatty Chief Executive, Ian Tyler, said:

“We are delighted to further extend our involvement with the London Olympics, which began with the Aquatics Centre and now continues with this highly prestigious role in ensuring London 2012 secures a magnificent, lasting legacy.”

Estates Facility Management services include cleaning, building and grounds maintenance, repairs and security for the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

The ArcelorMittal Orbit is already the UK’s tallest sculpture at 114m. Designed by Anish Kapoor and Cecil Balmond, the venue will have two observation floors, giving visitors a stunning view across London’s skyline. It will be operated as a visitor attraction with pricing in line with similar London attractions.

Balfour Beatty WorkPlace will deliver services in alliance with market leading organisations – The Landscape Group, Groundwork, Renaisi, Greenwich Leisure Limited, dittio and Flamingo.