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IN PICTURES: The World's first 'vertical cable car' – the new i360 by Marks Barfield Architects

by Jason Holland | 15 Jun 2015

Marks Barfield Architects’ Brighton i360 is about to go vertical, as construction work at the observation tower in the south coast of the UK shifts into a new gear and heads skyward.

Standing 162m (531.5ft) high, the i360 will be the UK’s tallest visitor attraction outside London. Visitors enter a glass pod, with views slowly unfolding as it rises to the top of the tower.

The architects – husband and wife team David Marks and Julia Barfield – also designed the London Eye. Dutch contractor Hollandia, France-based Poma (designer of the glass pod, drive mechanism and the ride control system), plus Jacobs Engineering Group also worked on the London Eye project and have reunited to create the new tower.

“Using the experience we gained from creating the London Eye and some innovative engineering, the i360 will be the world’s first vertical cable car where passengers can walk around freely inside the moving viewing pod,” said Marks.

The glass viewing pod will be 10 times the size of a London Eye capsule and can hold up to 200 people at one time. A visitor centre has been incorporated into the foot of the tower design, incorporating a 400-seat restaurant, conference and exhibition space, a shop and children’s play facilities.

The foundations of the attraction have now been put in place, with the arrival of the first section of the tower last week (June 11) generating a significant local buzz as crowds gathered to witness the unloading of parts – which came by sea – from barge to beach.

“We have been preparing the ground for this arrival since July and now the project will be going up, up, up!” commented i360 chief executive, Eleanor Harris. “The tower build starts on Monday (15 June).”

The tower is scheduled to be completed in the next couple of months, with the attraction opening in Q2/Q3 2016, once the pod and visitor centre have been built.

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28 Jul 2014

Brighton's i360 plans finally underway as London Eye team reunites to build iconic structure

Marks Barfield Architects’ Brighton i360 is about to go vertical, as construction work at the observation tower in the south coast of the UK shifts into a new gear and heads skyward. Standing 162m (531.5ft) high, the i360 will be the UK’s tallest visitor attraction outside London. Visitors enter a glass pod, with views slowly unfolding as it rises to the top of the tower. The architects – husband and
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French company Poma has designed the glass viewing pod, which will be 10 times the size of a London Eye capsule
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