The architectural firm Populous is renowned for designing many amazing sports facilities and convention centers all over the world and they were definitely the right company to design the main arena of the 2012 Olympics in London. They have revealed the design of the stadium on 7 November 2007 and soon after the construction of the stadium began. At 80,000 seats, the Olympic Stadium in London is the 3rd largest Stadium in all Britain, right below the Twickenham Stadium and the new Wembley Stadium.
The preparation of the location of the stadium began in mid 2007, but the starting date of the construction was on 22 May 2008. The pilling works for the foundation began one month earlier and just three years later, the London Olympics Stadium was almost ready to open its gates on 29 March 2011. The stadium was completed many month earlier and its construction cost was even lower than expected.
The biggest problem while building this impressive stadium was the exterior wrap that it was supposed to have. At the beginning of the project the architects wanted to have an environmentally friendly fabric wrap outside. They wanted to use hemp wrapped around the façade of the stadium and held together with the help of a beautiful mural type design. They’ve also thought of plastic instead of hemp. The wrap would have been 20 meters (66 ft) high and would have covered 900-metre (1,000 yd) circumference of the stadium but.. the idea of a continuous wrapping or of using hemp was rejected.
The architects then sent to the Olympic Delivery Authority for approval a different kind of idea. They wanted to use a 2,5 m wide fabric panel-this would be the wrap, that would be positioned at 90 degree angle so that the entrance to the stadium will be done at the bottom of the structure everything being kept in place with the use of tensioned cables.
The Guardian newspaper revealed that a member of the architectural firm, Rob Sheard, suggested a different approach: a continuous video screen would be the wrap itself, but nobody backed up his idea. The Dow Chemical Company seized this opportunity and offered to fund the wrap for the stadium as long as they were allowed to place advertisements on it till the 26th of June, 2012, when all the banners and logos would be taken down.
The architects accepted the offer and this piece of information was revealed on 4 August 2011. The wrap will surround the stadium, it will be made from polyester and polyethylene and the printing process will be done with the help of UV curable links. The wrap will be installed around the beginning of 2012.
This is how the stadium looks right now (almost completed)
This is how it should look with the exterior wrap in 2012