Renowned structural engineer Cecil Balmond and artist and sculptor Anish Kapoor designed the 114.5m-high sculpture was largely funded by global steel firm ArcelorMittal who stumped up £19.6m of the full £22.7m cost. The balance £3.1m was funded by the Greater London Authority. Steel is the primary material used in this largest Britain Sculpture, because steel was the only material that could give the minimum thickness and maximum strength represented in the coiling structure. The organic design of Orbit is an extraordinary amount of work was necessary on structural engineering ArcelorMittal has largely sourced the 2,000 tonnes of steel used in construction from its Western Europe plants although token quantities of the material have been included from each continent where the firm has a plant. The company has also taken a level of sustainability into account, ensuring that 63% of the steel used was from recycled sources.
Arcelormittal Orbit is located between the Populous-designed Olympic Stadium and Zaha Hadid Architects’ Aquatics Centre, the ArcelorMittal Orbit is the tallest sculpture in the UK and reaches 22m taller than the Statue of Liberty. Its extravagant design has been a talking point for Londoners both within the AEC community and for the general public, splitting the critics into teams of either ‘love’ or ‘hate’. Moreover within the two 300 sq m inside viewing decks, visitors were able to gain panoramic views of the Olympic Park and London skyline for 20 miles in every direction.