The French company POMA will be part of the construction team for one of the highest and most incredible tourist attractions in the seaside resort of Brighton on the south coast of England. Towering at a height of 162 metres, the i360 is an incredible achievement combining technology, engineering, innovation and design. Located on the West Pier historic seafront jetty, the i360 is a unique and futuristic design with its observation cabin rising up along a tower holding up to 200 passengers per journey. It offers a plunging, panoramic and breathtaking view through its curved window panes. Operation of the i360 is carried out by Brighton i360 Ltd and opening is planned for the summer of 2016.
The i360 has been designed by the Marks Barfield London architects (David Marks and Julia Barfield) who are also the creators of the famous London Eye observation wheel inaugurated in 2000 – for which POMA designed the 32 capsules and drive system. The Dutch company Hollandia isdesigning the 17 “cans” that are piled upon top of each other to make up the tower. Those involved in the i360 project were impressed by the French company POMA’s expertise and technology. POMA designed the “pod and drive system” part, including the design of the 200-passenger cabin and all the equipment enabling the cabin to move up and down the length of the tower.
Leaving Rotterdam on the morning of June 6, the first half of the 162 metres of the tower fitted with POMA equipment for its operation travelled by barge and arrived in Brighton on June 11. At the end of June, the second half of the “cans” making up the tower will be brought to Brighton by barge. Once the foundations of the tower are complete, building of the tower will begin.
During this time, POMA will start assembling the 200-passenger observation cabin in its workshop in the French Alps. With its unique design in the shape of a saucer entirely covered in glass panes, it has a total surface of 180 square metres and weighs a total of 94 tons when empty. Once fitted to the high tower, it will take 5 minutes 20 seconds to carry 200 passengers to this unique seafront viewpoint at 138-metre high on the south coast of England.