American firm to design London Olympic stadium
LONDON -- An American architectural firm that has designed many major-league baseball parks was selected Friday to build the showpiece stadium for the 2012 London Olympics.
HOK Sport, which is based in Kansas City, Mo., is part of the Team McAlpine Consortium. The McAlpine group also delivered the main stadium for the 2000 Sydney Games and built the Arsenal soccer team's Emirates Stadium.
The 80,000-seat stadium in London, projected to cost $550 million to $740 million, will host track and field at the Summer Games as well as the opening and closing ceremonies. There are plans to reduce capacity to 25,000 after the Olympics and turn the site into a track and field stadium.
"We will deliver an outstanding venue for the games with a post-games legacy of which the U.K. can be truly proud," Olympic Delivery Authority chief executive David Higgins said.
The ODA said McAlpine was the only bidder that "met all the prequalification criteria." Higgins hopes to complete negotiations with the consortium early next year.
The Arsenal stadium was completed in two years and within budget, in sharp contrast to the delays and cost overruns that marred the rebuilding of Wembley Stadium.
Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press