Apparently there's more to this 'ring wave' technology than backyard inventors in aloha shirts. This New Zealand group is all about 'green' energy efficiency and bathymetric engineering brought in by ASR, the NZ company known worldwide for its work on artificial surfing reefs. It's not hard to imagine this, or similar technology, taking off and 'surfing' becoming a whole different activity to the one we know and love today. Imagine, for instance, the town of Bournemouth on the UK's swell-starved South Coast, deciding to build a Wave Box to go with the ASR-built artificial reef which is currently nearing completion. The town could market itself as a surf Mecca even more than it does today, evolving a whole new breed of 'surfers', despite the fact that Nature's own magic pulse rarely even reaches its shores.
And this isn't just fantasy. It has long been known that Kelly Slater is involved in a scheme that utilizes circular artificial wave technology, so it clearly isn't going anywhere. "Be very afraid," said Mike Doig of Cantabria, Spain, when he sent us this link. But should we be? What do you think? Send us your thoughts via firstname.lastname@example.org
The Wave Box is an exciting new business venture initiated by Jarrod Armitage. It began after researching the possibilities for a financially viable indoor surfing entertainment facility in New Zealand. Artificial surf complexes are relatively new phenomena’s. Fascination with surfing and the possibility of bringing one of the worlds most exciting sports to a safe controlled environment began to be a real possibility in the 80's.
As technology developed so did the number of wave pools built for surfing world wide. Over the last 20 years a number of different types of complexes have sprung up all over the world in different forms and incarnations. Cities around the world like Tokyo, Dubai, San Francisco and Florida are host to some of the world’s best and most expensive wave pools. With current technology these wave pools can produce some quality waves but quality waves come at a cost. The cost of running one of these types of facilities in New Zealand with our small population just didn't add up... until now!
Looking at these complexes and business models and transferring them to the New Zealand setting was at best going to be a labour of love more than a model of a financially viable business. For any business to operate viably there has to be more money coming in than going out. The set up costs were just too great for a business to make a reasonable return for its investment. After researching other possibilities and discovering that building a completely different wave, one that was extremely efficient on energy consumption but could still produce the highest quality surfable waves. Housing the perfect wave in a purpose built energy efficient complex that also houses entertainment, retail, a technology hub and a restaurant facility could make a financially viable wave pool complex in New Zealand. As the ideas develop making the The Wave Box a reality is becoming more real by the day.
The Wave Box will house the world’s first endless wave – a wave running through a channel that circles the interior of a new facility to be built in Albany, Auckland. The 2 meter high wave will give surfers a ride of up to 150 metres long, offering ideal conditions, every day. Three waves will run simultaneously around the pool each taking approximately 45 seconds to complete a circuit of the pool before one surfer is dropped off and another picked up. The surfable face of the wave is planned to be 8 metres wide and vary in steepness of between 75 and 85 degrees and will remain mostly unbroken. This wave will truly have the capacity for some for some high performance surfing. The facility will also house a beginner wave pool so that aspiring wave riders can get the basics before they progress to the challenge of the main attraction.
The innovative wave pool has been designed and developed in conjunction with ASR Limited – New Zealand’s world leader’s in-door surfing wave technology. ASR has conducted extensive testing on detailed models and even constructed a working one-fifth scale prototype. The Wave Box is a truly innovative and exciting business which will be a true success because of its energy efficiency. By having high efficiencies this keeps our overheads extremely low and allows us to create positive revenue even in harder economic times such as the present. A ride on the continuous wave will cost as little as $3.00 a ride.
Over the past 2 years Jarrod and a small group of directors worked towards developing ideas and possibilities for making this business work. This team are extremely passionate about making this project a reality and have the expertise to do it. With combined experience in successful start up business ventures, marketing, construction, engineering, entertainment industry and water safety; Not only does The Wave Box have a great team of experienced directors and technology from the best in-door wave design team in the world it has also established some key corporate partners who are lending their skills, experience, technology and resources.
Those partners include, Meridian Energy, Right House, Vodafone, XBOX, and Atlas Concrete. All bring a wealth of knowledge and resources to the table and along with The Wave Box team have a passion to see The Wave Box through to being a very successful business venture. The Wave Box with Meridian Energy and Right House will communicate to New Zealand and the rest of the world that we are the leaders in renewable energy generation and are reducing environmental loading through a series of effective initiatives and process efficiencies. Vodafone looks to use the latest in multimedia communications to enhance the experience for all The Wave Box users and are also assisting with communication right throughout the project. Atlas Concrete wants to make a bold national and international statement about how advanced, effective and green their products are. This project is a perfect opportunity for them to ‘showcase’ it’s aligning products which will enhance the facilities efficiency as well as reduce environmental impacts.
Having everything developed in New Zealand by New Zealanders finding corporate partners who could see this exciting business becoming a reality is only the beginning. The Wave Box is also looking to give the average New Zealander an opportunity to be involved in this business. With New Zealander’s love of the water, and can do attitude along with building groundswell of support from fun loving New Zealanders with an eye for opportunity.
As another New Zealander with that can do attitude Peter Blake put it; 'the hardest part of any big project is to begin.'We have begun. We are under way. We have a passion'