Reynolds Polymer Technology, Inc. in partnership with international property developers Ecoworld Ballymore Group, announces unveiling of the world’s first “floating” swimming pool, which spans 82 feet across two buildings, 115 feet in the air. The pool consists of one, solid, 14-inch-thick piece of acrylic and is made from totally transparent polymer, which was engineered and manufactured in the small Colorado town of Grand Junction. The acrylic will be the main feature of the Embassy Gardens’ Sky Pool in London, England.
“Manufacturing and engineering of the Sky Pool has pushed the envelope of what can be done in large acrylic structures,” says Paul O. Gardner, Vice President of Engineering, Quality, & Safety at Reynolds Polymer Technology, Inc. “The team in Grand Junction has overcome incredibly tight tolerances and requirements to arrive at a finished project that is unexplainable without seeing it. Words can’t adequately describe the finished product; it must be witnessed.”
Shipping proved to be another major task of the project. Transporting such a large structure, which weighs 122,000 pounds, from Grand Junction to London required police escorts, road closures, removal of traffic lights and street signs, as well as a full day closure of Nine Elms Lane which spans along the River Thames in London, as the pool arrived via the water.
“The design and engineering that went into Sky Pool involved many people across multiple continents.” Declan McLaughlin, CEO of Reynolds Polymer says. “Sometimes you are presented with challenges that seem insurmountable, and Sky Pool was one of those. However, it inspired our organization to go above and beyond and execute an inspirational iconic idea of a floating pool. Incredibly proud to be part of this once in a lifetime legacy challenge.”
The design of Sky Pool was built to appear simple to the public, however the concept is incredibly complex. In reality, its a three-dimensional structure carrying the weight of the water, as well as sustaining its pressure, spanning across a considerable distance at height, subject to wind loads, temperature fluctuations and building movements. While the project took 4 years to complete, six months was spent just exploring the concept with plenty of discussion on design data and safety measures.
The final result is truly an engineering marvel, a one-of-a-kind floating pool, an amazing architectural statement, and one of the best examples of highly engineered acrylic in the world.