World's First 'Floating Swimming Pool' at 115ft above the ground is now open in London

The world’s first transparent floating swimming pool between two buildings has been set in London, U.K. It is 82 feet (25 m) long. The pool is at the height of 115 feet (35 m) above the ground. People who live near Embassy Gardens in London, U.K can enjoy this thrill often. The transparent glass which is used in making this floating swimming pool (sky pool) is 14 inches (35.5 cm) in thickness.

Ideas Used

The sidewalls of this floating swimming pool from deep beams are capable of expanding up to 14 meters between two buildings while carrying water with its weight. The acrylic structure at the center is supported by stainless steel tubs at both ends that help in stepping into the pool, making the pool’s overall length up to 25 meters.

This unique idea of establishing a swimming pool at such a height is obviously for giving an amazing experience to people. The world’s first floating swimming pool connects two buildings in the mid-air.

The floating swimming pool was designed by HAL Architects with engineering firms like Arup and Eckersley O’Callaghan. U.S. acrylic fabricator Reynolds Polymer Technologies have been used in this pool.

The design and the engineering perspectives used

As the vision for making this is to build with a transparent bottom, your thinking might go straight to glass. But the team instead of using glass used acrylic for this project. As Paul Gardner, Vice President of Engineering, Quality, and Safety at Reynolds Palmer says,

“It’s (acrylic) weight is much less and also clarity is more if compared to glass, the ability to create it in one uniform piece is much better, and you end up with a beautiful structure that you wouldn’t have if the glass was used.”

He also added that such a project was never done in the past.

  • World's First 'Floating Swimming Pool' at 115ft above the ground London
  • World's First 'Floating Swimming Pool' at 115ft above the ground London

Difficulties in Making Floating Swimming Pool

The main reason for representing this as a hard task is the complex engineering used in joining two buildings mid-air ( up to ten floors) with a pool. Also, the pool will need to support the weight of water, the amount of pressure created on its both edges, and the wind factor also has to be taken into account.

Generally, high floored buildings move a little bit because of wind load and foundation settlement, especially the two buildings that repeat this separately. Thus establishing a link between two buildings that move independently from one another, was another factor whose accountability is important.

To overcome these difficulties Eckersley O’Callaghan says,

“The team managed to connect the pool not rigidly at both ends so that it can slide and maintain weightlessness factor.”

And as Paul Gardner also said that for transferring 122,000 pounds (55,338 kg) such a big and heavy structure from Grand Junction in Colorado to the center of London halfway was a hard task.

Floating Pool’s Journey

NewAtlas reported that The Sky Pool was escorted by Police across Texas before a three-week overwater journey towards the Netherlands. Thereafter the swimming pool was moved across the Port of Tilbury in London and was transported up the River Thames. Lastly, it reaches its destination with the use of an 840-ton mobile crane.

Declan McLaughlin, CEO of Reynolds Polymer said,

“The design and engineering of this Floating pool involved many peoples across multiple continents. Sometimes you are facing challenges that seem impossible, Sky Pool is such for them. However, it inspired our organization to go above and beyond executing this inspirational and unique idea of a Floating pool.”

The Floating swimming pool (sky pool) opened on May 19, but only guests and residents of the building are allowed to use it. A two-bedroom apartment in the Embassy costs more than $1.4 million.

The buildings’ Sky Deck also includes different things that make it more luxurious like a spa, summer bar, and Orangery, with views of the Houses of Parliament, the London Eye, and the U.S. Embassy.

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