Bidding deadline for 2012 Olympics Stadium extended

An artist's impression of the Olympic Stadium West Ham United and Essex County Cricket Club are among the bidders to use the stadium after the Games

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A deadline for submitting bids for the use of the Olympic stadium in Stratford, east London, after the Games has been extended by eight weeks.

The London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) said it was to allow more time to address a number of issues which have arisen since the invitation to tender (ITT) was issued in January.

Of 16 who expressed an interest, only four submitted formal applications.

The LLDC said the stadium will still re-open in the summer of 2014.

It said it has made "a number of clarifications" to the ITT in response to issues that have arisen.

Governing body approvals, technical improvements to the stadium and the opportunity to bid for the right to exploit the stadium naming rights were among the issues that have arisen, LLDC said.

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LLDC chief executive Andrew Altman said he wanted to make the process "as competitive as possible".

He said: "We have been very encouraged by the quality of the bids so far. However, a number of issues have arisen during the process and we believe it is sensible to give everyone more time so they can be addressed."

In March, the LLDC, which was then operating as the Olympic Park Legacy Company (OPLC), confirmed four bids from firms wanting to become tenants of the Olympic Stadium, were being considered.

West Ham United, which won the now-disbanded process to move to the stadium in Stratford after the London 2012 Games, is one of the bidders.

Essex County Cricket Club has also submitted an application.

West Ham United has applied for a 99-year lease of the stadium, which is reported to have cost £486m to build.

The plan had been to start evaluating the four bids with the aim of making a decision before this summer's Games.

The LLDC claimed it was not unhappy with the four bids but was addressing "technical issues" that had arisen.

Evaluation of bids will not now happen before the summer but the LLDC's "hard and fast" deadline is to have a contract in place by October, it said.

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