Changes involve greater integration with Stratford City development and adjustments to the location of the Olympic village.
The Olympic Delivery Authority today streamlined plans for the Olympic park facilities for London 2012.
The changes, which have been approved by the International Olympic Committee, include:
- Integrating the Olympic village, site of the athletes' accommodation and legacy housing, more fully with the Stratford City Development. This will allow a large part of the village to be delivered through housing provision already planned for Stratford City, and will allow us to start construction on the village earlier than anticipated as this land is already prepared and remediated for development. After the Games the Olympic village is to be converted to housing.
- Moving the International Broadcast Centre and Main Press Centre from their proposed location in Pudding Mill Lane into the park security cordon, improving security and providing a better platform for media activity with improved views of the Park and London's skyline.
- Releasing most of Fish Island, which was previously earmarked for temporary car and coach parking, and resiting most of the car and coach park in a multistorey car park already planned for the Stratford City site.
"Having the best possible design plan in place for the Olympic park is an important part of preparations for the crucial construction phase for the London Games. The integration of the Olympic park and Stratford City projects has always been a key factor in our respective abilities to deliver both of these schemes successfully," Higgins said.
Lord Sebastian Coe, chairman of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games, said: "The changes will bring the facilities closer together within the Olympic park resulting in an improved lay-out that will make the site even more secure for all users, including athletes and spectators as well as visitors, staff and community groups."
Manny Lewis, chief executive of the London Development Agency which is tasked with securing and preparing the land for the Olympic park said: "These improvements will help deliver an enhanced legacy for London and Londoners, which has always been the core of our vision. The changes also mean that nearly a third of the businesses - and 1200 jobs - which we originally needed to relocate can now remain where they are. This will significantly reduce the impact on local businesses.
Tessa Jowell, Olympics minister and secretary of state for culture, media and sport, said: "The important thing is getting it spot-on for 2012 and these changes will produce an even better Olympic park - a sign of our determination not to sit on our laurels after Singapore but to refine our plans to deliver excellence for athletes, spectators, media and the entire Olympic family.
Stephen Jordan, managing director of the stations and property division of London & Continental Railways, lead partner in the Stratford City development partnership, said: "London & Continental Railways and its partners in the Stratford City project have been working very closely with the Interim Olympic Delivery Authority team and we believe that tighter integration between the Olympic Games and Stratford City will work well. As the major facilitator of regeneration in the area, we have been keen to ensure that not only are the London 2012 Games a success but also that the legacy delivers the homes and jobs, as well as the commercial and retail facilities that East London needs. We are confident that the revised plans are a very good positive step forward."