A number of development projects will begin in April of this year and will run alongside events at the venue without impact on the planned programme. The improvements form part of a significant investment in Olympia by EC&O’s parent company, Capital & Counties (Capco) and aim to help sustain Olympia’s position as a world-class venue.
The schedule of works to the Olympia Two Building, which is due for completion in September 2012, will include:
• Enhancing the facilities in the conference centre (which will host Place West London in October) on the third floor by adding retractable walls to the East Hall. This will offer greater flexibility to conference organisers by providing versatile space for smaller breakout sessions.
• Refurbishment of Level One and infilling the atrium on Level Two. The existing escalators and stairs between these floors will be removed to produce more effective exhibition space.
• Reconfiguration of the ground floor space to create a large traffic marshalling area within the building to help improve the working environment for organisers. This will also improve traffic conditions for local residents by taking more vehicles off the surrounding roads.
The plans for further improvement works comes following the opening, late last year, of the newly redeveloped West Hall. The new two-story, 97,000 square feet exhibition facility enjoys new links to the Grand Hall and Olympia Two behind a restored façade, making Olympia more flexible and interconnected.
Nigel Nathan, EC&O Venues Managing Director said: “These projects are further positive steps in helping Olympia sustain its position as world-class venue. With these upgrades, Olympia is adapting to the changing demands of the exhibition industry and ensuring that it is an exhibition venue for the future.
“In 2012, Olympia celebrates its 125th anniversary. We continue to build on is prestigious history and invest to assure its future as the industry’s favourite venue.”
Karim Halwagi, Chief Executive of the Association of Event Organisers (AEO), believes these enhancements will further help stimulate the London event market, saying: “We welcome this investment. Olympia continues to be a popular and well-equipped venue and these improvements will further enhance its offer and reputation for event and conference organisers.”