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London 2012: stadium contractor ready to begin steel erection

Steelwork for the London 2012 stadium will begin to be erected within the next 48 hours.

Fabricator Watson Steel has this week been delivering the steelwork from its factory in Bolton to the London 2012 site in Stratford with a view to beginning erection before the end of the week.

The steel will largely be used for the temporary element of the structure, which will seat 80,000 during the Games before its roof and top tier of seating is dismantled to leave a 25,000-seat concrete bowl venue post-Olympics.

The permanent lower tier of seating will be precast concrete rakers with precast concrete terrace units, while the temporary upper tier seating will be supported by steel rakers, also with precast concrete terrace units. Byrne Bros is the concrete frame subcontractor and Tarmac is the terrace unit subcontractor.

Team Stadium - the consortium responsible for designing and building the stadium and comprising main contractor Sir Robert McAlpine, structural engineer Buro Happold, architect HOK, landscape architect HED and planning consultant Savills Hepher Dixon - is working closely with Watson Steel to ensure the steel is light and easily demountable.

A pre-cast concrete batching plant has been set up on the south part of the Olympic Stadium site to cast the 200 rakers that will support the seating units for the lower 25,000 permanent seats and the driving of 4,000 piles is complete. Over 100 columns, each 5m tall, have been built to provide the support for the podium of the Stadium's west and south stands and eight tower cranes, each between 48m and 60m high, have been erected in the Stadium bowl for the concrete work and steel and roof erection.

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