Event Structures, Sport Events

Swimming pool covering of high quality

Neptunus builds temporary swimming pool for Commonwealth Games

From 28 July to 8 August 2022, the Commonwealth Games took place in Birmingham. The Commonwealth Games is a sporting event for members of the Commonwealth of Nations, a political society of 56 countries, mainly former territories of the British Empire.

Once every four years, the Commonwealth Games are organized. More than 4,500 athletes compete in 25 disciplines, including triathlon, judo, cycling, boxing and swimming.



Alchemy International and Nussli were appointed by the organization to design and build a temporary swimming pool for training and warm-up of professional athletes. The covering of the temporary pool required a high-quality structure with a large free span. After all, a 15 x 50-metre pool needed to be covered. Alchemy International and Nussli approached Neptunus for a high-quality solution.

Within 3 weeks, Neptunus built a 25 x 60-metre Evolution with a height of 8 metres for the temporary swimming pool. The foundation was laid in the first week, and the spaceframe roof-structure was built on the floor. The roof structure was hydraulically lifted, and side panels could be inserted.

Seamless interface between the permanent Aquatics Centre building and the Evolution building was created using a 10 x 17-metre Alure Globe structure, such that the temporary pool felt like a permanent adjunct to the building itself.

The building was dismantled after nine months but could have remained in place for several years. The Evolution is now available again for other events or semi-permanent uses.


Temporary Swimming Pool for Commonwealth Games


Construction took place in parallel with the completion of works on the main Aquatics Centre, on a highly constrained site. The temporary pool facility had to be constructed on limited space along the existing building. On-site project management support and back-office support throughout the lifecycle of the project were critical, enabling on-time delivery of the structures (and subsequently the rest of the scheme), successful interfacing with other work packages on the site and safe delivery of the project.

A highly experienced and professional construction team executed the works on site, demonstrating the benefits of modular demountable structures engineering design and technical delivery expertise.

As the rooms had to be warmed, both the Evolution and the Alure Globe were equipped with thermo roof skins and insulated wall panels. This ensured that energy costs were kept to a minimum.


Temporary Swimming Pool for Commonwealth Games


Chris Sheppard, director of Alchemy International: “The Neptunus Team that collaborated with us in delivery of the temporary training pool infrastructure at Sandwell Aquatics Centre for the Commonwealth Games were a pleasure to deal with from start to finish on the project. From contractual appointment through to engineering & design, health and safety, sustainability, construction planning and on-site delivery, the team were communicative, professional and conducted themselves in a manner that aligned with our own values.

The Evolution building provided the perfect balance of a semi-permanent clean aesthetic, technical performance suitable for a temporary Olympic length swimming pool, the agility of modular demountable construction components/techniques, and the sustainable composition/design to meet exacting project requirements.

The project was executed to a very high standard and we look forward to collaborating again in the near future.”


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