Mid February saw official London 2012 automotive partner BMW roll out two further elements of its Olympic activation programme.
Firstly, the premium car maker has unveiled plans for a show room pavilion to be positioned at the heart of the Olympic Park on an elevated site above the Waterworks River, between the Olympic Stadium and the Aquatics Centre.
The company expect to receive in excess of 8,000 visitors a day during the Olympics, and they will be able to see a selection of BMW models on plinths suspended over water, giving the impression that it floats, at the two story pavilion.
The objective of this experiential 8,000 square foot pavilion space will be to highlight their latest vehicle innovations, their specially created London 2012 vehicles, examples of the marquee’s Olympic fleet and to house a range of interactive visitor exhibits.
The pavilion will also showcase the Munich based auto brand’s 4000-strong fleet of vehicles which will provide transport for athletes, officials and all other operational aspects of the Games.
It will also use the new venue in Stratford to highlight their commitment to sustainability. It is being designed to achieve the challenging 120g/km CO2 emission threshold required by LOCOG.
This 2012 fleet will consist of low-emission diesel, hybrid and electric cars as well as motorcycles and bicycles to meet all the needs of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG). This will consist of efficient diesel-powered cars featuring Efficient Dynamics and 200 MINI Es and BMW 1 Series Active Es.
These 2012 BMW hybrids and electrically-assisted bicycles will make their first appearance on British roads at Games time.
British firm Serie won the competition to design the pavilion and the creative idea will be based on the classic Victorian bandstand. It will use river water to provide a sustainable source of cooling for the building before returning this filtered water to the river via an eye-catching ‘water curtain’ feature.
Serie co-founder and principal architect Christopher Lee explains that the design takes the idea of the pavilion in the park, the Victorian bandstand, but instead of one pavilion we envision nine pavilions clustered together to form a family.
‘As a major investor, manufacturer and employer in the UK, BMW Group is deeply proud to be an official partner for Britain’s first Olympic & Paralympic Games since 1948,’ said Tim Abbott, managing director of BMW Group UK
‘This commitment to the UK is also reflected in our choice of a home-grown architecture practice to design our pavilion and we’re delighted that Serie’s final design reflects our commitment to sustainable thinking in such an innovative and eye-catching manner. We believe it provides a truly worthy addition to the Olympic Park.
Secondly, at a launch event in London, fronted by BMW London 2012 Performance Team member Mark Lewis-Francis, the upmarket German car brand explores the theme of ‘Ultimate Performance’ through a series of short films under the title BMW Presents.
Each film revolves around how each member of the 2012 Performance Team maximises their potential and also highlights a particular BMW model by drawing parallels between performance, power, design and endurance.
The first film to be released in the series is ‘Man and Machine’ – a documentary by Yannakis Jones on Paralympian David Weir.
Weir is a wheelchair racer and the film’s theme revolves around the athlete’s relationship with his racing wheelchair.
It explores how Weir needs to contact seamlessly with his chair to maximise performance and highlights the technology built in to this hi-spec piece of racing technology.
The work also relates this to how the connection between the driver and the car is central to BMW delivering the ultimate diving experience.
The films have been produced in tandem with BMW UK’s strategic sponsorship partner Synergy.