Modest science lab instead of the giant stadium in East London – this was the selection of British Architects' institute with the 2012 Stirling Prize. Olympic Stadium has to settle for being shortlisted.
During a ceremony in Manchester the Royal Institute of British Architects chose one from a shortlist of six projects delivered recently in the United Kingdom. Stirling Prize went to Cambridge-based laboratory instead of the Olympic Stadium which some hoped would win.
London' third largest stadium (after Wembley and Twickenham) was a controversial nominee with outrage triggered several times in the course of its construction – by inflating cost and still unclear legacy.
But it was a somewhat desired choice among people after the success of 2012 Games. The ground's flexibility with numerous demountable structures was stressed to be the key advantage.
Many critics preferred Belfast's Lyric theatre or Wakefield's Hepworth art gallery to be selected by RIBA, so final selection of the Cambridge University laboratory came as a surprise compared to both popular demand and specialists' views.