Wellcome Trust in £1bn talks to run Olympic site

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The Independent Online

The Wellcome Trust was last night at the centre of a £1bn plan to take over the bulk of the Olympic Park and use it to create a science and technology hub to drive innovation and business.

Negotiations are understood to be under way to set up a deal that could enable the Trust to buy up the the athletic village, media centre, stadium and aquatic centre.

Up to 11,000 homes would, as has long been intended, still go ahead but much of the site would be devoted to a science and technology zone.

In a statement last night a spokeswoman said: "The Wellcome Trust has been shortlisted by the Olympic Delivery Authority to submit a proposal for the purchase and long term management of the residential properties known as the Athletes Village.

"In exploring this opportunity further, we are giving detailed consideration as to how we may also become investors in the wider Olympic Park and optimise the legacy of the Olympics. To this end we are currently meeting with a broad range of stakeholders to explore this opportunity."

The trust was said to be looking at a £1bn offer for the freehold of much of the Olympic Park. It was unclear, however, how this would affect West Ham United's move into the stadium.