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Olympic Trials in Architecture


By Jill M. Speegle

As athletes continue to break records and crowds cheer at the London 2012 Olympics Games, many of the architects, engineers and suppliers involved in Olympics-related work are muted.

They cannot promote their treasures due to a marketing agreement with the Games’ organizers.

New London Architecture, an organization devoted to issues surrounding architects, planners and developers in the capital city, and its chair, Peter Murray, are openly expressing distaste for the Olympic marketing rules.

 Peter Murray shows off his screen-printed shirt bearing the names of the architects and engineers who designed the London Olympics.

 Courtesy of Peter Murray

Peter Murray shows off his screen-printed shirt bearing the names of the architects and engineers who designed the London Olympics.

How is Murray protesting?  Well, he’s parading around in a screen-printed t-shirt that lists all the architects and engineers involved in the London 2012 Olympic Games.

“Only Populous and Atkins, of those commissioned by the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA),” can showcase their work on the structures because they are “Third Tier” sponsors, Murray told dezeen.

Populous designed the Olympic Stadium.

Protest Setting

Murray chose the July 30 Creative Industries Summit as a protest stage. (The summit is one of 18 being organized by UK Trade & Investment during the Olympic and Paralympic Games to boost British industry and help build partnerships between UK firms and international businesses in advertising, media, design and architecture.)

“Privately, ministers suggest the architects should ignore the ban, but [they] will not say so publicly,” he said.

However, in an e-mail to D+D News, Murray said, he was able to get a government minister to wear the t-shirt at the summit.

A lift on the marketing ban may not be in the cards until next year. And by that time, attention may be on Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, as it will host the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.

So, where do your opinions veer in this Olympic trial?


Jill M. Speegle

Jill Speegle is the Editor of Durability + Design News. She earned her B.A. in journalism and English as well as her J.D. from the University of Arkansas. In Sketches, Jill shares her thoughts on a number of topics that may be of interest to the D+D community, including architecture, interior design, green building, historic restoration, and whatever else catches her radar.



Tagged categories: Architecture; Color; Design; Green building; Interior design; Restoration; Architects; Color + Design; Designers; Engineers

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