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A green and sustainable legacy

Enquiry question: Did the 2012 Olympics provide east London with a green and sustainable legacy?
Learning objectives

Knowledge and understanding

  • The London 2012 Olympics promised to be the ‘greenest’ Games ever
  • The urban environments can promote good, or bad, mental and physical health
  • Urban environments can vary in quality within a very short distance
  • The Queen Elizabeth Park has transformed the urban environment

Geographical skills

  • Interview members of the public
  • Annotate photographs
  • Analyse different locations for their impact on well-being
  • Evaluate information from a range of sources
Learning outcomes

Most students will be able to:

  • Understand the background to the London 2012 Olympics and the subsequent regeneration of this part of east London
  • Place the concept of sustainability for individual buildings and the whole Olympic Park within the wider context of environmental concerns over global warming
  • Identify features of an urban environment that contribute to good mental and physical health
  • Identify features of a building that help to make it sustainable
  • Carry out a questionnaire with members of the public
Pre-visit recommendation

Students should:

  • Watch a video of the changes that have happened in Stratford in the 21st century
  • Read about the essential features of sustainable cities

Meet at Stratford International station. Show students a large wall map to outline the locations they will visit during the day. Ask them what are the essentials for a healthy, sustainable life.


Olympic Park wall map


Location 1: Stratford E15 Walk through Westfield and Stratford Centre to an area of old Victorian housing. Students complete a healthy environment survey.

Location 2: Carpenters Estate E15 Walk to through Stratford to the estate. Repeat healthy environment survey.

Location 3: Aquatic Centre Walk to the centre in the Olympic Park. Carry out a population survey of people using the centre. Annotate photo to show the sustainable features of the centre.

Location 4: Main park entrance Carry out a survey to find out where people came from and how they travelled.

Location 5: Olympic Park Walk through the park, observing features and labelling them on a map. Visit an exhibition about sustainable energy at the Energy Centre.

Location 6: Velodrome Continue walking through the park, observing features, to the Velodrome for lunch. After lunch, annotate photo to show sustainable features of the Velodrome.

Location 7: Olympic rings viewpoint Walk to the viewpoint to sketch the view, annotating sustainable features.

Location 8: East Village E20 Walk to East Village (former Athletes Village) and walk around, observing the sustainable features. Students complete at least two more healthy environment surveys in E20.


Sheet 1: Healthy Environment Survey x2

Sheet 2: Who uses this facility?

Sheet 3: Sustainable features of the Aquatic Centre

Sheet 4: Olympic Park user survey

Sheet 5: Olympic Park map
Interactive model of a combined heat and power system

Sheet 6: Sustainable features of the Velodrome

Sheet 1: Healthy Environment Survey x2


Students discuss factors they have seen which make for a healthy urban environment. What factors affect mental and physical well-being? What differences are there between E15 and E20? How has the QE Park been designed to promote well-being and sustainability?


Sheet 7: Factors for a healthy environment

Footer image of Stratford
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Footer image of Stratford