The Brighton i360 has reached a new milestone this week as the jacking tower for the 162 metre tower was removed revealing the slender tower beneath and first images were revealed of the almost complete viewing pod, as it is trial-assembled in France.
Said Eleanor Harris, Chief Executive of the Brighton i360, “It is incredible to see the tower standing without the jacking tower. Now you get a real sense of why the i360 is the slimmest tall tower ever built in the world; it is a real marvel of engineering.”
The pod, which is being built by Poma-Sigma, near Lyon, will carry up to 200 passengers to 450 feet above Brighton & Hove. Poma is one of Europe’s leading cable car manufacturers and also built the London Eye capsules and drive system.
The pod is 4.7 metres high and 18 metres in diameter and clad entirely in glass, made by specialist Italian company Sunglass.
David Marks, architect and Chairman of Brighton i360 Ltd said: “Poma’s glazed pod is absolutely amazing. The quality of the glass is superb, and Poma’s work so skillful, you have to pinch yourself to realise it is all handmade.”
The fully enclosed, aerodynamically shaped, futuristic glass viewing pod is spacious at ten times the size of a London Eye capsule, which were designed by the same architectural and engineering team.
Travelling from street level on Brighton’s seafront up to 450 feet, the viewing pod will provide a 360 degree view through double-glazed laminated curved glass, before returning to beach level.
Among its other features, the i360 passenger pod will be heated and air-conditioned, is fully accessible for wheelchair users, has bench seating for passengers and will also house the unique Sky Bar.
Julia Barfield, co-architect and director of Brighton i360 said: “The pod takes the breath away – sitting as it does between fields of Maize and rows of ski capsules – like a transport from another world. The filigree fineness of the structure, the captivating playfulness of the mirror underside and the almost fluid quality of the glass will undoubtedly exceed all expectation.”
The huge 100 metre high crane, nick named “T-rex”, next to the tower is being removed from Brighton beach over the next few days and the compound on the shingle will return to public use. The last pieces of the tower’s cladding will also be added to bottom tower cans this week.
Meanwhile, the 60 concrete columns and base for the beach building have also been completed and the focus over the next month will be the completion of the concrete frame by Mackley for the base building at beach level.
Continued Eleanor Harris, “We are really looking forward to welcoming the breathtaking i360 glass passenger pod to Brighton soon! The build is on track and we are well on the way to opening our doors next summer.”