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Huge crane makes light work of Exeter’s new leisure complex

Published: 12 June 2019

St Sidwell's Point

A huge tower crane is making light work of the massive construction project underway to create the UK’s first Passivhaus leisure centre at the Exeter Bus Station site.

The striking red crane will be a major landmark in the city centre over the coming months as construction on site gathers pace.

The super energy efficient leisure complex called St Sidwell's Point is being built alongside a brand new bus station.

The current bus station will remain open throughout the two year redevelopment programme.

The tower crane is one of the largest used in the city:

  • It is two and a half times the height of the Exeter Chiefs’ rugby goal posts
  • The radius of the crane is the same as three double decker busses parked end to end
  • The crane could lift four fully grown African elephants at the same time
  • It is sitting on a concrete base deeper than a three storey building

In the coming months the steel frame of the leisure complex will slowly will begin to emerge from the ground.

The contractor is constructing the pool box slabs and the retaining wall between the wet side accommodation and dry side accommodation.

The drainage below the slabs will be installed as well as insulation, prior to pouring concrete for the slabs and retaining structure.

St Sidwell’s Point will open in 2021.       

The water quality is expected to be better than at any other swimming pool in the country. A special filtration system will mean there will be minimal chemical content, which will greatly enhance the experience for users.

Built to the ultra high quality Passivhaus standard, St Sidwell’s Point will be one the world’s most energy efficient leisure centres.

The state-of-the-art facility will feature:

  • A main swimming pool and learners pool with moveable floors
  • A confidence water pool
  • A 100 seat spectator seated area
  • A café to seat 50
  • A 150 station fitness gym and two fitness studios
  • A health suite and spa facility
  • A children’s soft play area

The new Exeter Bus Station will include covered waiting and boarding areas and high quality facilities, and will replace the current station opened in 1964.

Both developments are being funded by the City Council.


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