Waterco is the preferred choice for a public fountain in the
UK’s second-largest city
"Peace of mind was needed and that’s what
they got when they installed Waterco."
We take a look behind the scenes of Birmingham’s refurbished Centenary Square Fountain and its iconic ‘Floozie in the Jacuzzi’ sculpture.
Waterco Europe has long been associated with Fountains Direct Limited, one of the most successful companies of its type established in the United Kingdom.
One Tower Bridge London, Riverlight on the River Thames and Canada Gardens are just a few projects that showcase the combined technical expertise and engineering excellence behind this well-respected partnership.
Fountains Direct is the preferred choice for many prestigious projects, which in this case includes the design, construction and refurbishment of two large public water features located in the heart of Birmingham, the UK’s second-largest city.
Victoria Square and its famous ‘Floozie in the Jacuzzi’
Working in conjunction with CPC civils and Waterco Europe, Centenary Square Fountain and Birmingham’s famous ‘Floozie in the Jacuzzi’ have been restored to full working order.
Fountain 1: Centenary Square Fountain – “The Dancing Fountains”
Surrounded by the Symphony Hall, Library of Birmingham and the Hall of Memory, the multi-million-pound redevelopment of Centenary Square Fountain now features a mesmerising 60m x 30m, 20,000m3 shallow reflective pool comprising of 20 ‘dancing’ water columns.
Designed by Edinburgh-based Graeme Massie Architects, the fountain’s zero-depth design relies on several of Waterco’s commercial-grade products, including:
• 2 x Micron SMDD900 commercial media filters complete with Waterco EcoPure Glass media
• 2 x Hydrostar 4HP 3-phase commercial pumps
• 4 x Trimline C75 Bag filters
• 4 x MultiCyclone centrifugal filtration systems
“The two Hydrostar pumps draw water from the main water feature and through two different systems,” explains Waterco Europe CEO Tony Fisher. “Each consists of two C75 bag filters and double manifold MultiCyclone centrifugal filtration units before entering Waterco’s Micron SMDD900 commercial media filters and re-entering the feature via the main reservoir. The primary sanitisation is chlorine and acid with UV installed as a secondary system.”
2 x C75 bag filters and double manifold MultiCyclone centrifugal filtration units.
Micron SMDD900 commercial media filters and re-entering the feature via the main reservoir.
Fountain 2: Victoria Square – “Floozie in the Jacuzzi’
The centrepiece of Victoria Square is a well-known artwork known as ‘Floozie in the Jacuzzi’. Officially titled ‘The Goddess to The River’, artist Dhruva Mistry designed the sculpture in 1993 to instil a feeling of “peace and safety” in the public space. However, in 2013, Birmingham’s iconic water fountain was completely drained and planted out.
Following the regeneration of Centenary Square, the 1.75-tonne sculpture is officially back on as a working fountain — much to the delight of resident “Brummies” and visitors.
Once again, a number of Waterco’s water treatment innovations are relied on to maintain high-quality conditions, including:
• 3 x Waterco Lacron MBF30” media filters complete with Waterco EcoPure Glass media
• 3 x Hydrostorm Plus 2.5HP 3 phase commercial pumps
• 3 x Trimline C75 Bag filters
• 4 x Hydrostar Plus 7.5Kw commercial pumps
“There are 43 wall and floor inlets along with a further two inlets located underneath the salmon bowl and a jet ring surrounding the Floozie herself producing an impressive water curtain,” Fisher explains. “Water then cascades down to the weir crest steps and into the bottom bowl where two smaller figures are located before finally flowing through the overflow ledge where two 300mm pipes transfer the water directly to the plant room.”
Four Waterco Hydrostar Plus pumps draw water from the main reservoir and back to the feature where a separate system consisting of the Lacron DBF 30-inch filters, Hydrostorm Plus pumps and C75 Trimline bag filters ensure it is filtered to the very highest quality.
Four Waterco Hydrostar Plus pumps draw water from the main reservoir and back to the feature.
Hydrostorm Plus pumps and C75 Trimline bag filters ensure it is filtered to the very highest quality.
“Being such a central location in the heart of Birmingham, the commercial equipment had to be of the highest quality and that’s why Waterco was the preferred choice,” says Fisher.
Creating inclusive public spaces
The people of Birmingham view Centenary Square’s re-opening as one step closer to creating the next generation of public space across the city and these iconic water features powered by Waterco are integral to that objective.
It is the vision of Birmingham City Council and its design partner Paradise to create inclusive spaces where “every child, citizen and neighbourhood matters”.
“This is the square, above all others, where people sit and spend time,” explains Paradise senior projects director Ken Trew. “Where they can enjoy activities and events, a drink or a meal, all while taking in its stepped curves and sweeping views. It is somewhere people can feel part of something bigger — the city itself, its fabric and its history.”
Premium products for peace of mind
“Peace of mind was needed and that’s what they got when they installed Waterco,” says Fountains Direct UK Project Manager Chris Ball. “Knowing Waterco equipment has been manufactured and supplied for over 40 years all over the world in many different applications — and is based in the UK — means that the entire team has full confidence in both the supply, quality of the product and high standard of service.”
Birmingham City Council’s deputy leader, Councillor Brigid Jones, says the revitalised square represents the city’s ‘past, present and future’.
“The square is no longer just a place for people to pass through — we wanted it to be something for the people of Birmingham to come and socialise in, somewhere for people to sit and enjoy and somewhere to play as well,” he explains.
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