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Royal Assent signals ODA leap from starting blocks

LONDON'S OLYMPIC Delivery Authority (ODA) was this week expected to announce that it is finally 'ready to go'.

ODA chief executive David Higgins was yesterday expected to tell NCE's The Games Brie'ng that today (Thursday) would be the day his team becomes an of'cial corporate entity.

The ODA was expecting the Olympic Bill to be given Royal Assent today, handing it its of'cial powers and allowing Higgins to ramp up procurement for the Olympic Park's construction.

Higgins' procurement director Ray Payne is ready to announce on Monday that the NEC3 suite of contracts are to be used on all Olympic projects.

And the ODA has been swamped with 81 expressions of interest for its 'delivery partner' programme manager role.

The deadline for firms and consortiums to register their interests to contact the ODA passed on Tuesday. Key teams were believed to include:

Parsons Brinckerhoff, EC Harris, Taylor Woodrow, Sinclair Knight Merz

Bovis Lend Lease, Capita Symonds, KBR, Franklin & Andrews

Amec and Balfour Beatty

CH2M Hill, Mace, Laing O'Rourke, Davis Langdon

Bechtel

All parties have until 25 April to respond to the detailed descriptive document, which outlines the delivery partner's role.

A key concern for whoever wins the contract to manage the Olympic Park's £2.3bn construction will be the fate of the Olympic Village.

Developer Stratford City Group was this week understood to be in negotiations to change the membership of the consortium. Of members Westfield, Stanhope and the Reuben Brothers, it is likely at least one will be bought out by the consortium's other members.

John McKenna Consolidation centre urged

CONSTRUCTION TRAFFIC to London's Olympic Park would be halved if it used a consolidation centre, Olympic chiefs were to be told this week.

EC Harris director Graham Matthews was expected to tell NCE's The Games Briefing conference on Wednesday that an off-site centre for stockpiling and delivering materials would address the problem of restricted access to the Olympic Park.

Freight movements to Stanhope and Bovis projects in the capital have dropped by 50% since London's first multi-user consolidation centre opened last summer (News last week. ) 'The centre would also help meet the requirement that London 2012 is a zero waste games, ' added Matthews.

He added that while the Olympics was a unique project, it could learn many lessons from the successful Heathrow Terminal 5 development, which has its own consolidation centre and relies heavily on prefabricated components.

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