Waterslides at the upcoming Coventry waterpark project fit intricately into limited footprint of indoor waterpark situated alongside church spire built in 1200s
Building a water park near a historic site has undoubtedly happened in the past - perhaps numerous times. But building a waterpark within mere yards of an 800-year-old church tower and spire is undoubtedly a once-in-several-lifetimes event. The challenges of situating the new Coventry City Centre Leisure Park in Coventry, West Midlands, Central England, then, was one that required unusual respect and specialized considerations, and Polin Waterparks is honored to have been chosen as the waterslide supplier to this unique project.
FaulknerBrowns Architects fulfilled the requirements of the historic £36.7 million (US$41.26 million) undertaking. The firm has designed many innovative and award-winning buildings, including Derby Arena, a velodrome for the Pan Am games in Toronto, the canoeing and sailing centers for London's Olympics in 2012 and an Olympic-standard aquatics center in Dubai. Other key contributors to the project include the main supplier and construction firm the Buckingham Group Contracting Ltd. (Stowe, Bucks, U.K.) and consultant Neuman Aqua Ltd (Ockley, Surrey, U.K.).
Set to open in late 2018 or early 2019, the project has been called a "game-changer" by architect Bilge Pakis, Design Manager of Polin Waterparks. Bilge Pakis says: "It is a game-changer in its distinctive design, required to fit the facility into a very tight footprint on a site where Franciscan monks originally constructed a cruciform-shaped church in the early 1200s. Over the years, the site's space became smaller and smaller as history left its marks.'' (King Henry VIII's dissolution of monasteries in 1538 doomed the original building, leaving only the tower spire, In both cases, the construction of nearby businesses slowly squeezed the borders of the only surviving edifice until the site's former occupant - an office building - was erected in the 1970s.)
Colin Roddy, Project Director of Buckingham Group Contracting, says that working on the project is a challenge his team is excited to tackle. "Yes, the limitations of the space create a very controlled environment in which to work," he says. "But we're experienced in understanding the intricacies of such challenges. It's also very exciting to be part of creating a centerpiece for the city of Coventry."