NOV 20, 2017
Looking back from Britain’s current chaotic state, the 2012 Summer Olympics seems like a golden era. Bringing the world’s attention to a run-down part on the city’s east side, the London Games succeeded in promoting a vision of the city and its country that was efficient, self-confident, and diverse.
Certainly it didn’t entirely succeed in creating venues that were sustainable longterm, but unlike too many hosts before it, London really did try. The games were a successful international branding exercise for East London and provided a large glut of short-term employment. But how well did they do in delivering long-term improvements to the relatively deprived boroughs surrounding the park? A new reportprovides a pretty stark answer: For East Londoners, the games mostly failed.
Released by the London Assembly’s Regeneration Committee, the report is pretty damning from the outset:
The data shows… that while the Games provided an initial focus for new investment activity, it was short-lived and resulted in mainly physical and economic gains. The gap in many quality of life indicators between the six host boroughs and the rest of London (known as ‘convergence’) is not being closed. The gap in terms of sporting or physical activity rates has got worse too.