Olympics Learning Legacy Paper

This Learning Legacy paper outlines the key processes implemented to delivery sustainability objectives on the Olympic Park and explains the activities undertaken by different parts of the supply chain to help deliver these goals.

In winning the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games London pledged to host the ‘Greenest Games’ ever and to leave a lasting legacy of physical assets and learning to be shared with future Games and other major projects. This therefore provided a huge opportunity for the UK construction industry to meet the many challenges of delivering a sustainable development project and to address the radical changes needed in current construction practices.

This Learning Legacy paper outlines the key processes implemented to delivery sustainability objectives on the Olympic Park and explains the activities undertaken by different parts of the supply chain to help deliver these goals.

Although manufacturers and suppliers have been making significant investment in products and processes that will enhance the sustainability performance of the built environment, there are many barriers to the wider take up of innovative products and practice on construction projects.

As the client on the Olympic Park, the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) put in place processes to overcome the traditional barriers against using innovative solutions by creating the culture and conditions to embrace creativity and innovation from the supply chain.These processes included: Setting a strong vision and developing challenging sustainability targets; engaging early with the supply chain;embedding sustainability into procurement processes; communicating contract opportunities; managing risk, rather than avoiding it;employing sustainability managers; and implementing a strong auditing procedure to track delivery of sustainability targets.

As a result, the ODA is on track to achieve its sustainability targets and more products with improved environmental performance have been introduced to the market.

Challenges still remain which will need to be actively addressed by clients, designers, contractors, suppliers and government. The real legacy of the Games will depend on the extent to which the industry learns from, adopts and develops the processes used on the Games.

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