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Variable venues

Cover Story

In all 83 venues will be used during the Games, 33 for the competition proper and 50 for training. While most of the venues are in London, sailing events will be held in Weymouth and Portland, and football around the country.

Building new venues will cost £560M.

The London venues are in three zones.

The Olympic Park holds nine completely new venues, five of which will be retained after the Games.

Cost of the 80,000 seat Olympic Stadium, which will host all the track and field events, is put at £245M.

Work will begin in July 2008 for the stadium to be ready in December 2011.

After the Games it will be reconfigured to a 25,000 seat athletics stadium including a new 'House of Sport', bringing sports governing bodies under one roof.

It is hoped that the stadium will be used by a premier league rugby team.

A 20,000 seat Aquatics Centre with t wo 50m pools and a 25m diving area is the venue for swimming, diving, water polo and modern pentathlon. Costing £65M, work will start in December 2005 for a December 2008 opening. It will be kept after Games, reconfigured to seat 3,500.

A 15,000 seat Hockey Centre will cost £13M with construction to start in February 2010 and taking a year. This will be retained, reconfigured to a capacity of 5,000.

A Velodrome will hold 6,000 spectators and cost £25M.

An adjacent BMX circuit will also hold 6,000 and cost £7M.

Work on both will start in July 2007 to be ready in December 2008. Both will be retained after the Games, with the Velodrome reconfigured to hold 3,000.

Four new arenas holding between 8,000 and 12,000 spectators and costing between £19M and £29M will host a range of events, including basketball, volleyball, handball, fencing and modern pentathlon. Just one will be kept after the Games as a regional home for indoor sports holding 10,000.

The other three will be dismantled and moved to other cities.

Outside the Olympic Park, the River Zone makes use of the existing Excel exhibition centre for boxing, wrestling, table tennis, judo, taekwondo and weightlifting, while conversion of the Millennium Dome is planned - into an indoor arena for gymnastics and basketball finals. Greenwich Park will host the equestrian events.

The Central Zone captures London's famous landmarks, providing stunning backdrops. Horseguards Parade will be used for beach volleyball, Wimbledon for the tennis, Lords cricket ground for archery and Regents Park for baseball and softball. Road events will also take place in this zone.

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