To celebrate the passing of the Deregulation Act in April, which allows London residents to share their homes with travellers for up to 90 days a year, VolkerBrooks has once again worked closely with brand activation contractor Star Events, to create a Linkflote pontoon solution that would float a house down the River Thames.
With no available barge capable of providing the required ‘foundations’ for the house, the two companies re-established their working relationship designing, engineering and building the bespoke floating structure. The project depended on the creation of a specific size of barge that would enable the house to float. VolkerBrooks’ marine experience was critical in helping construct six compatible spreader units which, in combination with eight Linkflote pontoons, two short scow ends and 10 bollards provided the fully functional and Port of London Authority (PLA) approved working platform.
Air BnB’s floating house was fully functional and had two bedrooms, a living room, bathroom and garden with real grass, a dog kennel and an apple tree. The house was officially ‘launched’ on Monday 18th May and spent the next five days floating down the Thames past Chelsea and Westminster. It shared moorings between Canary Wharf and Putney Pier during the week and was used as a party and meeting venue, as well as providing luxury accommodation for competition winners.
Star Events' project manager, Gavin Scott, commented: "The Air BnB floating house was a particularly challenging and complex project, pulled together in a short timescale. Our engineering is immediately recognisable for its ingenuity and this was a great example of what can be achieved when you have the right team of specialist contractors."
Ian White, general manager of VolkerBrooks said: “Although we have worked with Star Events before, this is the first time we have created a structure so unique. It was a great privilege to be a part of this project.”