Olympic Park, London, E20 3EL
Until the Olympic Park opens to ticket-holders, the Velodrome will remain the least accessible of the three key venues to curious onlookers: the Stadium and Aquatics Centre can be admired from the riverbank, but the Velodrome is set back from the river beside a major arterial road. It's a shame, because this 6,000-seater venue, shaped like a Pringle crisp, is a stunner. Sir Chris Hoy - with three gold medals, a major part of the UK's cycling triumph at Beijing 2008 - helped to select the winning design team for the Velodrome.
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Inside, the slope of the track and the best temperature have been carefully worked out to produce the optimal conditions for fast rides. The track is made of sustainable Siberian pine wood and the whole structure built from lightweight materials (including another cable-net roof) to keep transport and manufacture emissions low. Great pains have been taken to use daylight, rather than artificial lighting, and natural ventilation. The Velodrome even catches rainwater for recycling. Unimpressed by the engineering? Aesthetes will get great views of east London via a glass wall between upper and lower seating.
Location: At the northern end of the North-East Concourse, between the Basketball Arena and Eton Manor