A consortium led by developer Lend Lease has been appointed preferred bidder on the £4bn Olympic Village and Stratford City scheme.

The stakeholders in the scheme are the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA), London & Continental Railways and developer Westfield. They have announced that they are in exclusive talks with the Lend Lease consortium over the contract. Rival groups were led by Bouygues and Barratt.

It is expected that Lend Lease and its partners, East Thames Group, First Base and Crosby Lend Lease, will sign a final agreement within weeks. The contract involves the Olympic Village and the bulk of the scheme's legacy housing, commercial and hotel development.

David Higgins, chief executive of the ODA, said: “This is another important step forward in delivering our vision for the Olympic Park. Lend Lease has emerged as the strongest candidate for the element of the Stratford City Development that will house the athletes for the Games and deliver vital new housing for the community after 2012.”

Nigel Hugill, the chief executive of Lend Lease Europe, said the ultimate test for the company would be the extent to which Stratford evolved after the Games.

He said: “The level of investment and the quality of public transport infrastructure is such that we expect to build more at Stratford after 2012 than before.”