Olympics 2012: ArcelorMittal Orbit officially unveiled today at the Olympic Park
Olympic Orbit, the looping red tower that looms over London’s Olympic Stadium, is being officially unveiled today.
It was designed by Turner Prize-winning artist Anish Kapoor and structural designer Cecil Balmond.
From the end of July, visitors will be able to climb on the £22.7 million ($36 million) structure to take in panoramic views across London’s skyline.
Tickets will cost £15 ($24) and £7 ($12) for children. Anish Kapoor described the charges as “a hell of a lot of money”
“This thing has to be paid for, but there’s a push to keep that cost as low as possible,” he said.
After the Olympics, the public won’t be able to access the Orbit until Easter 2014 – when the South Plaza is opened up.
Ticket prices have not been announced for the full opening from 2014.
Members of the media were given a sneak preview of the experience on Friday morning.
At 114.5 metres (376 ft), the Orbit is the tallest sculpture in the UK – twice the height of Nelson’s Column.
The tangled steel lattice – 63% of which is recycled steel – incorporates the five Olympic rings.
“We wanted to make something that was kind of a deconstruction of the tower,” said Anish Kapoor.
“Towers are almost always symmetrical,” he continued, saying the Orbit’s twisted loops were “the refusal of a singular image”.
It is hoped the tower will help to attract 1 million visitors a year to Stratford’s Olympic Park.
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