Partridge’s “Skymate” project is a major feat of structural engineering, creating an adventure playground that seemingly defies gravity. Appearing like the skeleton of a space station fallen onto an Adelaide beachside, Skymate is an aerial adventure park consisting of 54 “Sky Pod” activity stations over four levels. The structure forms the framework for over one hundred different aerial activities.
The Skymate structure is 26 metres high. Of the 16 steel columns that support the activity stations, only six actually meet the ground!! The rest are fully suspended, tied together with platform rings and structural cables.
Skymate has received recognition in many engineering spheres, picking up awards and nominations from various entities – the Association of Consulting Structural Engineers (Australia), the Institution of Structural Engineers (UK) being two high profile examples. Skymate also won the South Australian branch awards of the Australian Steel Institute earlier in the year and, this October, was awarded a High Commendation at the 2016 National Awards of the ASI.
For those in Sydney, the Skymate structure in Adelaide has now been replicated and built at the Skypeak Adventures attraction at St Marys, just past Blacktown. Slightly different in shape and layout, but utilising the same concepts, Partridge was also involved in its design, construction, and certification.