GTL Partnership was employed as Principal Contractor, to design and install a foundation solution to enable the relocation of the Wipeout Roller Coaster from America to Suffolk. The brief was to construct the roller coaster during open season, this coupled with an ambitious programme ensured that this would be a demanding project.
Geotechnical Ground Conditions
The soils investigation identified a high water table and running sands and liquid mud as potential geohazards. The 116 ft tall structure posed the additional challenge of extreme live loads.
The initial scheme put forward by the clients’ project team involved 9000m3 of concrete in a balanced raft solution. In GTL’s opinion, this approach would introduce additional logistical problems to an already complicated, ambitious project.
GTL’s solution to combine the helical screw pile and concrete cap was to prove popular. This approach was able to reduce cost, meet the tight programme and decrease the amount of concrete by 90%, an environmental plus in anyone’s book.
In February 2007, the work commenced with the levelling of the site. Over 150 GTL Helical screw piles were used. This was the first time this innovative technique had been used in the construction of a roller coaster in the UK.
The ride has been described ‘as one of the most exciting rides the UK – a roller coaster that will set the benchmark as being the tallest, fastest and most extreme ride in East Anglia.’