The stadium design was launched on 7 November 2007. As a "unique 80,000 seat stadium, it will be the centrepiece for the 2012 Games, hosting the opening and closing ceremonies and the athletics events, converting down to a 25,000 seat permanent stadium after the Games, when it will become a new home for athletics, combined with other sporting, community and educational uses", according to LOCOG.
As of June 2009, The stadium's track-and-field arena has been excavated out of the soft clay found on the site, around which permanent seating for 25,000 has been assembled, using concrete "rakers". The natural slope of the land is incorporated into the design, with warm-up and changing areas being incorporated into a semi-basement position at the lower end. A demountable lightweight steel and concrete upper tier has been built up from this “bowl” to accommodate a further 55,000 spectators, and is nearing completion