ArcelorMittal Orbit


Artists: Anish Kapoor & Cecil Balmond
Artists: Anish Kapoor (b. 1954, India)
Cecil Balmond (b. 1943, Sri Lanka)
Link(s): Anish Kapoor Wikipedia
Cecil Balmond Wikipedia
ArcellorMittal Orbit Page

Towering at 114.5 metres tall, the ArcelorMittal Orbit is Europe's tallest free-standing sculpture. Constructed using 60% recycled steel, it was designed by artist Sir Anish Kapoor and designer Cecil Balmond.

It houses two observation platforms at 80 metres and 76 metres above the ground and is serviced by two lifts. Customers can walk down the external stairway or, for an extra charge, use the Slide (see seperate entry).

The sculpture takes the form of a continuous loop from start to finish, a creative representation of the 2012 Games and the extraordinary physical and emotional effort that people undertake when they compete.

From the top, the entire Park stretches out in front of you, framed by London's distinct skyline.

The ArcelorMittal Orbit was commissioned by the Mayor of London for the London 2012 Games and was largely funded by ArcelorMittal, the world's largest steel company.

ArcelorMittal Orbit
  • 900k visits since opening in May 2014
  • In 2009, a design competition was held to create an iconic landmark that would become the centrepiece of Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and commemorate the London 2012 Games
  • The winning concept, announced on 31 March 2010, was a creative collaboration between world-renowned artist Sir Anish Kapoor and structural engineer Cecil Balmond
What now?
  • In June 2016 The Slide at the ArcelorMittal Orbit opened, created by Belgian artist Carsten Holler – world’s longest and tallest enclosed tunnel slide.
  • The ArcelorMittal Orbit is Britain’s largest sculpture
  • 2,000 tonnes of steel, 35,000 bolts and 19,000 litres of paint were used in its construction
  • Sir Anish Kapoor
Structural Engineer
  • Cecil Balmond
  • National Venue Awards 2015 - Winner of Best Unusual Venue
  • Engie
  • 5 April 2014
  • 2,000 tonnes of steel stretching to 560 metres, 35,000 bolts and 19,000 litres of paint were used in its construction.
  • Sculpture consists of five main loops of a three-dimensional knot which touch the ground in three places, like a tripod.
  • Vibrant red colour (RAL 3003) was chosen because it signifies luck in some Eastern countries.
  • 250 colour spotlights can be individually controlled to produce a stunning digital combination of static and animated lighting effects.
  • The ArcelorMittal Orbit is steadied by a tuned mass damper - the pendulum alone weighs 40 tonnes and is 2.8 metres long.
  • 86% of workforce from local boroughs at opening.
  • 114.5m high - UK's tallest sculpture with viewing platforms at 80m and 76m.
  • Two passenger lifts take approx. 32 seconds to reach the upper viewing area.
  • On a clear day, visitors can see up to 20 miles in each direction.
  • It takes about 12 minutes to walk down the spiral staircase which is 1,150 feet long and has 455 steps.
The Slide
  • An enclosed steel tube that winds its way in and out of the latticework of the ArcelorMittal Orbit twisting down to the ground as an alternative to the lifts or staircase.
  • Designed by Carsten Höller
  • Opened June 23 2016