Europe

Orbit sculpture unveiled at Olympic Park

Updated 1:57 PM ET, Fri May 11, 2012
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The Orbit Tower at London's Olympic Park was unveiled by the city's mayor Boris Johnson. Bryony Jones/CNN
Johnson claimed the swirling, bright red sculpture, was "more complex" than the Eiffel Tower, and "endlessly rewarding" for the viewer. Bryony Jones/CNN
Visitors will climb 455 steps -- or ride one of two elevators -- to two observation platforms. Bryony Jones/CNN
Some of London's most famous landmarks, including the Shard, the Gherkin and St Paul's Cathedral, can be spotted from the top. Bryony Jones/CNN
The sculpture was the brainchild of artist Anish Kapoor and designer Cecil Balmond. Bryony Jones/CNN
Cecil Balmond's original sketch for the Orbit Tower shows how the design has evolved over the past three years. Cecil Balmond
Anish Kapoor said he chose red -- a color that features in much of his work -- to make sure the sculpture stood out among the grey and white Olympic venues. Bryony Jones/CNN
The swirling, swooping design has been compared to everything from a hubble-bubble pipe to a rollercoaster. Bryony Jones/CNN
It also features a large trumpet-like structure at the base. Bryony Jones/CNN
Anish Kapoor says the bell-shaped canopy is "slightly frightening, a little ominous". Bryony Jones/CNN
Visitors will be charged £15 (£7 for children) to ascend the tower -- a figure Kapoor admits is expensive. Bryony Jones/CNN
But its creators and backers hope the latest landmark on London's skyline will soon become as popular as the London Eye. Courtesy: Freud Communications