Olympic Village green space and wetland plans unveiled

Green space plans for the London 2012 athletes' village were unveiled by the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) this week.

Thousands of new trees, parks, play areas and open spaces will be installed to support the 2,818 new homes across the site. The announcement came as the first stage of landscaping work got underway at the village site with the creation of a 2.5ha wetland park featuring ponds, marshlands, pathways and seating.

The project will deliver 10ha of new parklands, wetlands and open space, featuring more than 2,000 new trees and 100,000 wetland and wild flower plants.

Play areas, cycling facilities, picnic sites and recreation spaces will be interspersed among the new homes, 1,379 of which will be affordable. The new green spaces in the village are in addition to the extensive landscaping already underway in the main Olympic Park site.

ODA chairman John Armitt said: "The athletes' village will create new parks, trees, play areas and open spaces that can be enjoyed by new and existing communities for generations to come. The construction of the village is firmly on track and with landscaping works now underway, we will start to see a series of new green open spaces take shape between the new homes being built."

London 2012 organising committee chair Lord Coe added: "We recognise the importance of the public realm in our plans for the village. The overall calm environment is crucially important to an athlete away from the venues and the crowds of the games. The mature designs planned demonstrate that we care about athlete well-being by creating a peaceful oasis. The village has a permanence and maturity and will have the same lasting impact on its residents after the games."

London mayor Boris Johnson said: "I am determined that London becomes the world's best big city and that means creating fabulous places to visit and relax. So it is great to see new green and open space emerging from this long-neglected part of London."

The landscaping and public realm in the village has been designed by Vogt Landscape. Suppliers to the project included Hillier Nurseries (trees), Salix (wetland plants) and Palmstead Nurseries.

Landscaping and public realm in the athletes' village will be delivered in phases between now and spring 2012. Construction work started in June 2008 and more than three-quarters of the residential plots in the village are now structurally complete.

KEY ELEMENTS OF OLYMPIC VILLAGE GREEN SPACE

Parks

- A series of interconnected park areas including an orchard with British fruit tees, a formal square, a picnic space and a garden area with three interconnected ponds.

Wetlands area

- A large ecology wetlands park leading directly into the wider Olympic Park site - includes three ponds and two marsh areas with seating and paths.

- A large wild flower lawn scattered with trees will create a picnic area.

- More than 700 new trees to create a "gateway" into the wetlands area and a "green canopy" throughout.

- Native trees will be used including field maple, common alder, silver birch, black poplar, aspen, English oak, hornbeam and a variety of willows.

- More than 70,000 wild flower and aquatic plants.

- Sixty bird boxes to be installed and new habitats created for a range of species.

Play areas and cycle facilities

- Park areas interspersed with children's play areas, including a neighbourhood play area in the centre of the village site with various play equipment and a sheltered seating area.

- A cycle network throughout the Olympic Village site, integrated into the surrounding London Cycle Network, together with cycle parking spaces.

Trees and wetland plants

- More than 2,000 new trees, 100,000 wetland and wild flower plants and large areas of wild flower meadows and lawns.

- Wild flower, tree and hedge planting.

- Landscaping planned to flow diagonally from the north-east to south-west of the village site.

- Planting to form tree-lined avenues around the main streets including nearly 200 semi-mature London plane trees.

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