Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content


The greatest show on Earth is upon us.

​It is just seven years since we all celebrated our successful Olympic bid but would we have had the same reaction knowing the winner was going to have to produce a games - itself a huge undertaking - through the teeth of the worst ever global recession? Research by JLL suggests impacts on the property market do occur but are closely affected by the size and maturity of the host city.

Economic Impact

Four years ago we would not have hesitated in saying that the impact on London would be minimal as the city's size and maturity would enable it to absorb such an event. However, we would today predict that the overall impact will be greater and the relative impact more pronounced:

  • Although London has lagged the rest of the UK GDP during 2011 - in spite of its huge construction activity - London is forecast to grow above the UK average
  • It is hard to quantify the price of a feel good factor that will help lift both spirits and the UK out of the current doldrums
  • Having a large scale infrastructure project has benefits and we are also very good at it. All recent Olympics have finished nail bitingly close to the torch arriving. Here in London all main venues were completed and tested well ahead of time. This expertise - much British - is now being exported around the globe and onto Rio. 
"Green" Olympics

And what of our pledge in the bid book of a One Planet Olympics which concentrated on 5 key themes: Climate Change; Waste; Biodiversity; Inclusion and Healthy Living?

Our 2009 report Winning Gold for Green outlined the significant targets for construction and our latest 2012 update Gold, Silver or Bronze - Has London done enough? gives London high praise in achieving what will be the greenest Olympics ever.

Driving down costs and converting previously unreachable standards into the commercial mainstream has so far been the single biggest benefit to the commercial real estate industry.

The Legacy

The London Legacy Development Corporation's plan is more advanced than any other host city as the Games begin, having secured occupiers/operators for the Press and Broadcast Centres, the Aquatics Centre, the Multi Use Arena and the Orbit. The stadium is also close to securing an occupier and the first residential phase will shortly select a development partner.

The Olympic Park will have changed the perception of this part of London, establishing it as an attractive family housing location with great leisure amenities. Finally, a fundamental measure of our Olympic legacy is how well it fills the gap and provides the "stickiness" that keeps those working locally, also living locally. A sustainable community will be truly created when young families have the opportunity and the will to put down roots.

Only then will we say it was worth it!