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An observation tower and landmark structure for Southampton waterfront
Group Members
Anthony Badaro, Maxence Baraniak, David Clifford, Michael Cooper, Adam Hood
Dr Mike Byfield
The client brief was for an observation tower to provide a viewing platform and a rotating restaurant at a minimum height of 140 m. The structure is intended to act as a landmark for Southampton, drawing visitors from around the country. It therefore required a distinctive and elegant architectural form.

The design proposal consists of an angled hollow concrete core of constant width but tapering length which supports a cantilevered stress skin steel torus or “Halo” structure offering three viewing levels. The lowest floor houses the restaurant with a rotating turntable floor offering changing panoramic views of the city and surrounding regions. The middle floor is a viewing platform, and the top floor an open-air walkway around the top of the torus. The concrete core has a central section of constant dimensions which houses two elevators and an emergency stairwell, providing access to the “Halo”.

Post-tensioning of the core is used to reduce tension in the core structure due to wind loading and bending moments from the cantilevered halo, as well as controlling tower deflections. The foundation is formed of a major pile cap linking a series of pile foundations. To reduce environmental impacts and concrete usage, the pile cap has been designed using deep beams on an orthographic grid with voids between them in a “waffle” configuration. This also provides space for inspection and jacking rooms for the post-tensioned cables in the tower core.
Site context view
Site context view
Primary structure schematic

External view of viewing platform