The first part of the tower has arrived

June 12th, 2015 | 2 min read

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The first section of the i360 tower has arrived safely and is now on Brighton seafront.

Crowds gathered throughout the day yesterday (June 11) as the barge carrying six sections of the tower and three sections of the jacking frame, which will help construct the i360, arrived on Brighton beach.

The barge arriving yesterday morning.

The barge arriving yesterday morning.

The giant yellow crane on the seafront – dubbed T-Rex by the construction team – successfully completed the first part of unloading before the barge set sail for Shoreham where it remained overnight. It returned in the early hours of this morning for the second lot of unloading.

And at around 9am this morning, the first of 17 steel cans which will make up the tower section of the attraction was safely transferred from barge to beach.

The first can be lifted onto the seafront.

The first can being lifted onto the seafront.

David Marks, the architect behind the i360, was on the seafront to watch the first set of unloading yesterday and hailed the event as a “major milestone” in the construction project.

His business partner, Julia Barfield, the co-director of Marks Barfield Architects, who, together with Mr Marks designed the London Eye, said: “Ten years ago, we set out on a journey to bring the i360 to Brighton.

“After all the preparation and planning, it is fantastic to see it all coming together.”

Because of the glorious weather, yesterday’s unloading was completed ahead of schedule – by around midday – and Neil Mardon, project manager with Hollandia, said everything had run according to plan.

The giant yellow crane in action.

The giant yellow crane in action.

Local band Steel Strum entertained the crowds near the West Pier Arches later in the afternoon and the unloading featured prominently on the evening news – as well as in today’s newspapers.

Anyone who missed the action yesterday should head to Brighton seafront today (Friday, June 12). Six cans and a further section of jacking frame are due to be unloaded throughout the day.

The i360’s chief executive, Eleanor Harris, said the first day’s unloading was a complete success.

She said: “We have been preparing the ground for this arrival since July and now the project will be going up, up, up!

“The tower build starts on Monday.”