Olympic Park

  • Client:

    Olympic Delivery Authority
    CLM Delivery Partner Limited

  • Project:

    Olympic Park 2012

  • Location:

    Stratford, London

  • Project Coordinator:

    Ash Girdler

  • Products Used:

  • Hazel spiling
    Wildfowl fencing
    Hazel fascine
    Rock Rolls
    Coir Rolls. Unplanted
    Coir rolls. Pre-vegetated
    Coir pallets. Pre-vegetated
    Pre-grown reinforced wildflower turf (Based on TRM 350)
    Turf reinforcing matt (Based on TRM 350)
    Chestnut Posts and Stakes
    Aquatic plants

 

Background

Creating a wildflower sward on bare ground (including reinforced turf) for later transportation to the site, required the correct balance of seed mixture as wildflowers can take varying amounts of time to establish depending on the species. The mixture needed for the Olympic venue included plants that would establish to protect the bare ground (in this instance reinforced matting) from air and soil borne weed invasion and erosion, but also not be vigorous enough to hinder the future establishment of the wildflowers. Such a mixture is called a “nurse crop” and usually takes the form of an open growing non-competitive grass seed mixture. Given the correct future maintenance, this ‘nurse crop’ will gradually form a smaller and smaller contingent of the sward, thus being replaced by the wildflowers as they establish and mature and an equilibrium across the species is arrived at naturally.

soft landscaping & Hard Landscaping At The National Football Centre

Over 10,000 m2 of grass and wildflowers TRM (turf reinforcement mat) were grown at our Merton nursery for the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) from July 2010. Production of the turf was carefully coordinated so that the maturity of the plants would comply with a strict installation schedule to meet the demands of the ODA. Deliveries of established rolls were called off as groundwork progressed in the park. It was essential that once installed on site the sward would take hold and be in peak flower for the opening day of the Olympics (July 27th, 2013) and would remain in full flower throughout the games and Paralympics.Over 10,000 m2 of grass and wildflowers TRM (turf reinforcement mat) were grown at our Merton nursery for the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) from July 2010. Production of the turf was carefully coordinated so that the maturity of the plants would comply with a strict installation schedule to meet the demands of the ODA. Deliveries of established rolls were called off as groundwork progressed in the park. It was essential that once installed on site the sward would take hold and be in peak flower for the opening day of the Olympics (July 27th, 2013) and would remain in full flower throughout the games and Paralympics.

Trees in new cemetery area

The Work

Innovations in the aquatic engineering and landscaping design of the venue called for the creation of these wetland areas to enhance the ecology of the park. After exhaustive testing by the ODA pre-vegetated coir pallets were found to be the most successful way of delivering native wetland plants back to the restored sections of the River Lee. Similarly, along some stretches of the River Lee, vegetated coir rolls were installed at the water line to provide habitat and a natural edge to the excavated channel.

Pre grown coir pallets were installed on a well-prepared wetland base soil. Well established wetland plants were soon able to take hold along the banks of the River Lee. Using our aquatic engineering expertise we were able to grow and transport all of the necessary wetland plants,grown from seed and cuttings taken from the original site and its environs prior to the start of construction. Pallets were used on flat and shallower gradients, while rolls were used to reinforce steeper embankments.

Aquatic and Landscape planting of the wetland areas and wildlife ponds were established using pre-vegetated coir pallets with well-established vigorous strong root systems. This technique speeded up planting to achieve the tight
installation schedule and by following a planting program, ensured the correct plant species were set in the right place.

This Aquatic Engineering and Landscaping project was monumental in size. Over 300,000 wetland plants were grown alongside 15,000 square metres of :- riverside and spectator lawns; timber seating; frog ponds; loggeries; wetlands; woodlands and tree-lined footpaths – creating a haven for wildlife and plants.

 Working for the Soft Landscape Contractors we were instrumental in the construction of the frog ponds, one of the many habitats created to encourage a wide range of wildlife. These shallow ponds, hydrologically separate from the River Lee, which runs through the site, were the prime habitat for breeding amphibians.

Long untreated chestnut poles were driven to refusal into the earth and each exposed section of the post was drilled and fitted with eye bolts for secure anchor points. The ‘Frog Log’ walls were erected using untreated wood of various diameters laid to the ecologists’ specified pattern creating the maximum potential habitat.

The gently sloping sides of the ponds were planted with native emergent and floating aquatic vegetation. The higher drier sides of the ponds were covered
with AGA nursery-grown vegetated TRM (turf reinforcement mat), to provide complementary terrestrial habitat for amphibians.

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