Olympic stadium not ready to reopen before 2016, London Assembly told

The amount of work needed to convert the Olympic Stadium means it may not be open to the public for another four years, the London Assembly heard today.

The London Legacy Development Corporation’s new chief executive Dennis Hone confirmed that the stadium would not reopen till August, 2015, at the earliest—and possibly not until the following summer if West Ham was chosen to take it over.

The options were unlikely to be completed until the start of the football season in August, 2016, he told the Assembly’s budget committee.

Also addressing today’s committee meeting was the Mayor’s London 2012 coordination director Neale Coleman, who revealed that the presumed nine million visitors a year to the Olympic Park could include two-million from the presence of a Premier League football club.

The Assembly’s budget chairman John Biggs, who represents east London at City Hall, said: “It’s disappointing to hear of more delay to the Olympic Stadium legacy.

“A huge amount of work will need to be done before it can reopen to the public, whoever gets the stadium.

Questions remain about access to funding to pay for new schools and health centres without raiding the public purse, he added.

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The full Assembly is questioning Mayor of London Boris Johnson, who heads the Legacy Corporation, at a City Hall public meeting on November 14.