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AuthorTensar International

DateJun 28 2013

Tensar International, a global leader in ground stabilisation and soil-reinforcement technology, has lifted the lid on its contribution to the London 2012 Games.

Working with stakeholders from an early stage, the Blackburn headquartered firm designed and supplied a range of its temporary and permanent wall, slope and relief structure systems for use across the Olympic Park and adjacent Stratford City Development – surrounding iconic buildings including the Olympic Stadium, Aquatics Centre, “The Copper Box” Handball Arena, and Basketball Arena.

The scope of Tensar’s work over a four year period saw its products installed both in the Capital and beyond, in projects including the Stratford DLR Station extension, Stratford City Bridges, the Whitewater Canoe Centre at Broxbourne, the Rowing Lake at Eton Dorney and the Canoe Slalom Course in Cardiff.

The Olympic Stadium, the largest and perhaps most iconic of the Olympic and Paralympic venues, benefitted from a large volume of Tensar’s natural look earthworks products, including the Tensartech® GreenSlope™ earth retaining wall systems. These were used to create the stadium’s impressive riverside embankments, which were then landscaped with a variety of trees and plants ahead of the Opening Ceremony.

Known affectionately as The Copper Box, the Olympic Park’s Handball Stadium also gained a lot of attention during the Games thanks to its distinctive shape. Here the TensarTech® TR2 system was used, enabling contractors to create a simple, low cost, and economic temporary wall structure.

The TensarTech® TR2 system consists of a steel mesh face units - lined with durable, heavy duty geotextile which is securely connected to Tensar uniaxial geogrid soil reinforcement by the company’s highly effective bodkin connection. No external face support or formwork is needed, as the rigid steel mesh face is braced internally and held in place by the geogrid and fill material, making for a quick installation process on site.

Other Tensar solutions specified for the London 2012 project included the revolutionary TriAx® TX160 and TX170 geogrids with their unique triangular structure to evenly spread pressure and minimise the risk of ground surface damage and the cost effective, highly versatile TensarTech® TW3 Wall System, which uses precast concrete modular blocks securely connected to Tensar’s uniaxial geogrids to create a low maintenance retaining wall with a near vertical face angle and a design life of up to 120 years. 

Tensar’s contribution to the Olympic Park project was recently recognised through the prestigious London 2012 Supplier Recognition Scheme (SRS).

Of the London 2012 project, Vice President of Tensar (EMEAR Region) Joe Cavanaugh said: “London 2012 has to be one of the most significant construction projects in living memory and we are delighted to have played a part in this. What’s more it’s a real testament to the research and development we have undertaken during our 30 year history that so many contactors working on the development requested the use of our products for their ground stabilisation and earth-retaining wall constructions.

“London 2012 was rightly seen as a successful Olympic and Paralympic Games and it can also be regarded as a mark of quality for the construction industry in Britain. We hope that the experiences gained during the project will benefit further projects of this magnitude in the future.”

For more information on Tensar’s systems and their applications please visit