The 114m high ArcelorMittal Orbit Tower is one of London’s newest iconic structures.  The concept of building the world’s longest and tallest slide within the structure of the tower was proposed by the London Legacy Development Corporation, to attract more visitors to the site.

The slide was designed by Carsten Höller.  Comprising a stainless steel tube that spirals around and through the convoluted tower steel work.  It’s supported by a series of struts and tie rods and running an overall distance of 178m whilst descending 76m.

CAN’s proposal for construction of the slide required access into many high level areas of steelwork in order to install rigging equipment.  This was only possible using rope access techniques due to the height and density of steelwork through which the slide was routed.

Individual slide components were lifted from ground level using a drum winch attached to kentledge.  This enabling the system to be moved into various locations within the constricted area around the base of the tower.

Many lifts required high level load transfers between winches to move the components around and through constrictions.  To add to the challenge, most tube sections were in excess of 6m long.  Not to mention, fabricated from lightweight thin-walled material, demanding great care as well as finesse.

The slide was installed and commissioned within the required 14 week programme in time for the published opening and associated press coverage, being widely acknowledged as a great success.

BBC One Show: 

Duration:        14 weeks

Client:              Buckingham Group

Location:         Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London