I’ve been reading London blogs and articles lately where the locals haven taken to grumbling about London’s decision to host this year’s Summer Olympics. Complaints include heavy traffic, increased crowds, and the amount of debt incurred from the Olympic Park. I thought to myself, can’t I find one Brit who is excited that the Olympics are being held in their city?? And then I found this article by Feargus O’Sullivan from TheAtlanticCities.com, who is thrilled about the Olympics coming to his hometown… but for a different reason than you might think:
“The afterlife of London’s Olympic Park was partially confirmed last week, when officials agreed to plans for the construction of a new neighborhood on part of its site once this summer’s games are over.
Called Chobham Manor, the 960-home neighborhood should be ready by autumn 2013, and will cover the current location of the Olympic basketball court (plus, one imagines, a little bit more of the park). It’s just the beginning of plans to cover London’s Lower Lea Valley area with badly needed new housing – four other neighborhoods providing a total of 6,800 homes are also in the pipeline, and by 2031 (yes, they’re giving themselves plenty of time) the former Olympic site should be a dense checkerboard of housing and parkland.
In an area that currently attracts few professionals with children, the new neighborhood aims to be especially family friendly, with four schools included in the blueprints. The plan so far is to have 35 percent of its housing fixed at affordable rents, making some of it suitable for people already living in this lower income area.”
So hurray for the Olympics because it’s creating affordable housing! O’Sullivan makes a good argument for the Olympics being held in London, even though I’m sure we could all gather from his article that the city could have, if they had wanted to, started this project years ago and been finished already. But that’s neither here nor there, so Viva Olympics!