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You know that the Olympic Games are about to arrive in a host city when people and places start to get dressed up. London is putting the Olympic rings onto Tower Bridge, hoping that the image will be as striking and memorable as the rings on Sydney Harbour Bridge at the 2000 Summer Games.Another set of large five-coloured rings will travel on a special platform up and down the River Thames every day during the Games, stopping off at famous landmarks. The capital also plans to project images of famous Olympians onto the parliament building in Westminster, which includes Big Ben. "Olympic London" is getting ready for its big night - the Opening Ceremony on 27 July. And Britain is determined to take the spirit and the energy of the Games way beyond the sporting venues.Like Vancouver in 2010, spectators will be able to watch the action on huge TV screens at Live Sites in London and across the country. More than 70,000 volunteers and London ambassadors have been recruited to help the Olympic family and spectators around the city and the sports venues.There will be plenty of innovation too. London 2012 is expected to set new standards in broadcasting - with the first live 3D Olympic broadcasts, including high-profile Olympic moments such as the Opening and Closing Ceremonies and the men's 100 metres final. Social media will also play a big role in spreading the message as spectators and reporters will be tweeting their experiences within seconds and keeping up-to-date with the action on their mobile devices.And, as the world's best athletes give their all in the sporting arenas, the London 2012 organisers are hoping that everybody will join in the party and celebrate the Games, even if they didn't get tickets for the sporting action. Unprecedented demand for Olympic seats means that "Spectators will be able to watch the Olympic action on huge TV screens at Live Sites in London and across the country"34 OLYMPIC REVIEW LONDON 2012

competitors will walk into packed arenas for qualifying rounds as well as finals. Decathletes will enjoy a full stadium for their morning 100m heats on the first day of action, and hockey and handball players will play early-round games in front of full stands.The Olympic Park in east London is expected to be buzzing from early morning until late evening. The Park, just a seven-minute train ride from central London, has been built on land that only seven years ago was covered with abandoned factories and scrap yards. The biggest urban park to be built in Europe for 150 years has been developed in a part of the city that desperately needed regeneration. It is now full of waterways that have been renovated as well as landscaped gardens.The new venues in the Park include the 80,000-seater main Olympic Stadium for the ceremonies and athletics, the Velodrome and BMX track, the Aquatics Centre, the International Broadcast Centre and Main Media Centre. All of these are permanent venues and will leave London with the best sports facilities in its history.The Park also has temporary venues for basketball, handball, hockey and water polo. In addition, it boasts a huge sculpture and tower called "The Orbit", with a 115-metre high observation deck where spectators can enjoy a spectacular view of the Park. After the Games, a new Olympic Museum will also be built near the tower.Left (top) Up to 10,000 fans at a time will be able to enjoy the Games on giant screens at Park Live - a dedicated viewing and picnic area in the newly created parklands in the Olympic ParkLeft (bottom)Olympic venues such as the Velodrome have already hosted major events, including the UCI Track Cycling World Cup in FebruaryRight 5,000 people took part in the Olympic Park fun run on 31 MarchBut the Games are also going to other parts of the capital. The equestrian events will take place in one of the sport's most impressive settings ever - Greenwich Park. It boasts the Prime Meridian line, where the eastern and western hemispheres meet, as well as spectacular views of the River Thames and the skyscrapers of Canary Wharf - London's main financial district.The sports will also take place in key tourist attractions. A beach volleyball arena is being built at Horse Guards Parade, close to Buckingham Palace, the home of Queen Elizabeth II. The Queen's annual Trooping of the Colour event takes place every year on the Parade ground to celebrate her birthday. The Mall, which runs from Buckingham Palace down past the venue to Trafalgar Square, will also stage the start and finish of the Olympic marathons and the cycling road races. The triathlon races will be based around Hyde Park, right next to London's famous Knightsbridge shopping district.Some of London's most well-known sporting venues are also being used for Olympic action. Lord's, the home of cricket, will stage the archery events and the grass courts of Wimbledon will host the tennis competitions. The North Greenwich Arena, formerly known as the Millennium Dome, will host the gymnastics and basketball finals. ?OLYMPIC REVIEW 35LONDON 2012