Unforgotten moments of the Olympics
Published: Thursday, August 16th, 2012
During the XXX Olympics in London, over 8.8 million tickets were sold so spectators could watch 10,490 athletes compete in 39 disciplines in 26 sports, played in 34 venues. There were 302 medal events and more than 21,000 broadcasters analyzing every bit of action. There were also 5,770 team officials and 2,961 technical officials and over 5,000 anti-doping samples were taken.
In preparation for the Olympic Games, London did a lot of cleaning up…but not in the normal sense. Around 4,000 newts and toads were removed by hand and relocated during construction of the Olympic Park and more than 525 birdhouses and 150 bat boxes were built to help maintain wildlife and keep them from the various sporting arenas.
Olympic officials in London also built many new things for athletes and spectators. A special terminal was built at Heathrow Airport for athletes heading home after the Games with 31 check-in desks and seven security lanes. The Olympic Stadium had a capacity of 80,000 during the Games, but it is the lightest structure ever built. McDonald’s also opened its largest restaurant at the Games. The 32,000-square foot venue seated 1,500 customers on two floors and has a staff of 500 people. There were three other McDonald’s operating during the Games, with one catering just to Olympians. And did I mention they get free food? Yep. If you’re an Olympian, you get all the free Big Macs you can eat. The three McDonald’s were deconstructed after the Games, with most of the furniture and equipments recycled or reused in other restaurants.
Four of the arenas will also be dismantled and relocated within the United Kingdom, along with the water polo and swimming pools. The Olympic Village, where the athletes stayed during competition, will be converted into 36,000 apartments with most of them offering affordable housing.
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