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London's Orbit tower opens

The ArcelorMittal Orbit, a steel sculpture designed by

The ArcelorMittal Orbit, a steel sculpture designed by Anish Kapoor and Cecil Balmond, which incorporates the five Olympic rings. (May 11, 2012) (Credit: AP)

LONDON -- Officials say a new park on the site of the 2012 London Olympics won't fully open to the public until a year and a half after the games.

Olympic authorities have announced plans for the 560 acre site, which will be dubbed the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

The park, including a lush river valley, biking trails and a tree-lined promenade, will open in stages.

On Friday, officials declared the completion of a centerpiece of the park -- the Orbit, a 115-meter looped and twisting steel tower that will give visitors panoramic views.

Some critics have called the bright red structure an eyesore, but artist Anish Kapoor, who designed it, says he finds it beautiful. And, he notes, the Eiffel Tower was considered a monstrosity by many when first built.

PHOTO: The ArcelorMittal Orbit, a steel sculpture designed by Anish Kapoor and Cecil Balmond, which incorporates the five Olympic rings. (May 11, 2012)

Tags: london olympics

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