OLYMPIC MEDIA CENTRE
One of a number of projects undertaken by Allies and Morrison for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Olympic Media Centre provided a working environment for the world’s media, press and broadcasters during the Games. Located within the north of the Olympic Park, the secure site was used to much success by the more than 20,000 accredited members of the media. The complex comprised a Main Press Centre, a 700-seat press conference auditorium, and an International Broadcast Centre, with linking bridges, as well as a temporary Catering Village, a ‘High Street’ providing cafes, shops and support areas, and a multi storey car park. The Media Centre was provided with an exceptional IT communications and energy infrastructure which offered great potential for legacy uses.
The 32,500 sqm, 154m-long Main Press Centre was designed as a permanent legacy office building to BCO standards with flexible layouts meant to suit a range of multi-tenant occupancies long after the Games. In legacy, the building has largely remained intact following the removal of temporary reusable sectional building accommodation from the roof terrace, and successfully integrated into Here East, a multi-tenant flexible commercial development designed by Hawkins\Brown. Working to a tight budget, the Main Press Centre uses a wholly industrial-looking material palate ensuring that architecturally the building would not look compromised. A corrugated steel facade was embraced to full effect, accented with yellow brise soleil, dressing up the structure in a polite yet direct way; careful consideration was made to how exposed services in the interior were organised within this industrial aesthetic.
The 51,000 sqm, 275m-long International Broadcast Centre provided studio and office space for broadcasting organisations during the Games. While it was a temporary building in planning consent terms, the shell, core and structure have since been incorporated into Here East. Similarly, the temporary press conference auditorium building has also been retained within Here East.
The temporary Catering Village was built from a hired reusable sectional building system and contained temporary escalators, lifts, circulation spaces and service rooms. A perforated timber envelope at its entrance provided an opportunity for some visual delight. It facilitated natural ventilation, allowed shafts of light into the space and offered glimpses out, while giving a distinctive identity to what was an otherwise utilitarian structure.
Carillion Construction for Olympic Development Authority