ODA announces sites for 'Big Five' venues have been cleared in preparation for construction phase in 2008

Demolition work has finished on the "Big Five" Olympic venues, according to the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA).

The sites of the Olympic Stadium, Olympic Village, Media Centre, Aquatics Centre and Velopark have now been cleared in preparation for the construction phase of the Games, which will start in 2008.

Olympic Park

On the Olympic Park site as a whole, more than two-thirds of buildings have been demolished and half the site cleared of debris.

The announcement caps a year of ups and downs at the ODA. While the Olympic logo, stadium designs and inflated budget revelations have received much negative attention, the pre-construction project has remained on track, with powerlines tunneling, planning and demolition programmes completed on time and on budget.

ODA chairman John Armitt said: “With such a huge project it was essential we got off to a good start. We have done that and are exactly where we planned to be at this stage. Big challenges lie ahead but we have put in place strong foundations for the future.”

The construction contract for the Velopark and developer agreement for the Media Centre are expected to be finalised early next year, while construction on the Olympic Stadium and the Aquatics Centre is expected to begin in April.