CABE slams landscaping of 2012 Velodrome

The landscape of the Velodrome in the Olympic Park could "alienate local communities and visitors", according to CABE's design review panel.

In a report from CABE's London 2012 design review panel, the quality of the landscape plan around the Olympic Velodrome has been criticised for not being accessible to pedestrians, everyday cyclists, and those with physical disabilities.

The CABE report on the Velodrome and Velopark said it was essential to develop a landscape strategy for the Velopark in legacy that defines how the wider landscape will function for all users of the park, not just cyclists.

The proposed 6,000-seat Velodrome, which will host indoor track cycling events alongside a BMX track, was the result of a design competition won by Hopkins Architects.

The spirit of the winning "floating" roof design has been successfully captured in a simplified redesign, and it could be the "jewel in the crown" of the Olympic Park, the panel concluded.

After the Olympic Games, the Velodrome and BMX track will be joined by a road cycle circuit and mountain bike course to create a Velopark.

CABE warned that it would strongly object to a landscape masterplan based on the illustrative scheme provided in the planning application.

The report stated: "[The scheme's] failure to either suggest key pedestrian routes, or create convincing spaces out of the landscape is particularly worrying. Unless this is addressed, there is a risk that the landscape could alienate local communities and visitors seeking to use the Velopark and the key links in this part of the wider park network."

London 2012 design review panel chairman Paul Finch said: "We support the architecture of what will be one of the three key buildings in the Olympic Park, alongside the main stadium and the aquatics centre. We hope and anticipate that the integration of landscape and routes in connection with the building will be equally successful."

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