London Spy

Venue guide: Aquatics centre

London Spy

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Where is it?: Olympic Park, Stratford, East London.

How do you get there?: The centre is situated to the south-east corner of the Olympic Park and stands at the park's entrance. To reach it, rail, underground, Docklands Light Railway, bus or coach can be used. National Rail, London Underground and DLR all serve Stratford station to the east of the park and West Ham station to the south, while Transport for London has bus stops in the area and there will be coach services to the park.

Capacity: 17,500.

What events will be held there and when?: Diving (July 29-August 11), swimming (July 28-August 4), synchronised swimming (August 5-10), modern pentathlon (August 11-12).

Public facilities: Catering facilities will be shared with the neighbouring Water Polo Arena.

History: The spectacular £269million centre, with its undulating roof of 160 metres in length and 80m in width sweeping up from the ground, was designed by prize-winning international architect Zaha Hadid and took three years to build, being completed last July. It contains a 50m competition pool, a 25m competition diving pool, a 50m warm-up pool and a warm-up area for divers. For the Games, there are two temporary stands to seat 15,000 spectators, but these will be removed afterwards, leaving a facility for the local community with seating for 2,500. It was the most difficult construction project in the Olympic Park, with more than 3,600 workers employed on it. One of the main challenges was balancing a required poolside temperature of 28-30C for the competitors with an underfloor cooling system for spectators.

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