The world's first 360-degree infinity pool set to be built on roof of skyscraper
Sometimes in life, it's important to face your fears.
Occasionally, your fears - like bears or being afraid of growing old - are well-justified; but sometimes, you've just got to bite the bullet, man. Go bungee jumping. Pet an animal you're not used to. Ask your crush out on a date! Even if things don't go perfectly, you'll have learned something about yourself you didn't know before.
Two of my biggest fears as a teenager were swimming and heights, and if I hadn't already overcome them, then I'd be all over this 360-degree infinity pool, which is conveniently (did I say conveniently? I mean dangerously) going to be located atop the roof of a skyscraper.
London's a big city, but one way to get a good view of all of it is to swim atop the new skyscraper built right in its bustling centre, standing at 200m tall. That's around 55 storeys, but you'll have even more stories to tell should you be able to swim (and survive) in this really tall swimming pool.
The pool (as well as the building) are all part of a venture by west Sussex-based company Compass Pools, who designed the pool with acrylic sides instead of glass, which the firm explains: "transmits light at a similar wavelength to water so the pool will look perfectly clear."
There's also a transparent floor so that people inside the buildings can see you as you swim (it's only creepy if you think about it).
Here's Compass Pools' swimming pool designer and technical director, Alex Kemsley, to explain some of the thinking behind the incredible structure:
"Architects often come to us to design rooftop infinity pools, but rarely do we get a say in the building design because the pool is usually an afterthought. But on this project, we actually started with the pool design and essentially said, 'how do we put a building underneath this?'"
"When we designed the pool, we wanted an uninterrupted view, both above and below the water," Kemsley continued. "Swimming in the SkyPool at The Shard, it’s quite a weird feeling to have helicopters flying past at your level, but this pool takes it a step further."
But as you might imagine, it's not easy to design such an incredible pool at such a great height. "We faced some quite major technical challenges to this building, the biggest one being how to actually get into the pool," Kemsley explained.
"Normally a simple ladder would suffice, but we didn’t want stairs on the outside of the building or in the pool as it would spoil the view – and obviously you don’t want 600,000 litres of water draining through the building either.
"The solution is based on the door of a submarine, coupled with a rotating spiral staircase which rises from the pool floor when someone wants to get in or out – the absolute cutting edge of swimming pool and building design and a little bit James Bond to boot."
Sounds totally crazy, right? It's not clear where the building will sit in the London skyline just yet, but construction could start as soon as next year, if everything goes right.