LOCOG undertaking huge transitional operation to make Paralympic Games equally successful

Wednesday, August 22, 2012
[PHOTO: David Jones/PA Wire] 
London: After a spectacular Olympic Games, the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) has been undertaking a huge transitional operation to make the Paralympic Games equally successful.

"The transition to what will be the largest Paralympic Games ever is a huge operation in a short time period. We are getting ready to welcome the world’s Paralympians, and deliver a truly spectacular Paralympic Games," said Paul Deighton, Chief Executive of LOCOG.

The venues were designed with both Games in mind but there are a number of specific changes to undertake. All venues will see the look and signage refreshed, the flags of the nations revised, adjustments to broadcast requirements, and changes to field of play, as sports in each venue are slightly different.

One example is the transition taking place at the Olympic and Paralympic Village. It has taken just 5 days (16-21 August) to transform a Village that hosted over 10,000 Olympic athletes to host 4,280 Paralympic athletes, 3,500 team officials, 1,225 Games Officials and 22 assistance dogs (there will be 1,800 wheelchair users in total). 14 tonnes of workshop equipment and spare parts has also arrived for Ottobock’s service provision for athletes, this includes a wheelchair repair centre.

One of the longest transition periods was up to 14 days (7- 20 August) at the Royal Artillery Barracks. Elements of this transformation include a field of play lighting refocus, seating bowl modifications and enhancements to make it a combined Paralympic venue for Shooting and Archery.

The giant Olympic Rings which are currently in cities across the UK and in London have started coming down. The Agitos, symbol for the Paralympic Games, will start appearing in London and cities in the UK over the next few days, with the first set launched in Cardiff last week. The Paralympic Flag features three 'agitos' (Latin for 'I move') in red, blue and green – the colours most represented in national flags around the world.

There are two new competition venues for the Paralympic Games:
 - Eton Manor – situated in the north of the Olympic Park, features nine courts for the Wheelchair Tennis competition, all designed in a striking blue colour. During the Games, it will also house temporary training pools for Paralympic Swimming events.
 - Brands Hatch – the internationally-renowned motor racing circuit near Sevenoaks in Kent will host 7,500 spectators each day over four days of Paralympic Road Cycling competition.

17 venues will no longer be required and will be dismantled or decommissioned so that  spaces can be returned to owners and the public. These are -  BMX Circuit, Box Hill, Earls Court, Hampton Court, Hadleigh Farm, Horse Guards Parade, Hyde Park, Lee Valley, Lord’s Cricket Ground, Waterpolo Arena, Wimbledon and 6 Football stadiums.
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