History of the World’s Tallest Skyscrapers

Skyscraper-History-ChartHigh Rise Facilities magazine recently took a look back at over 100 years of skyscraper history and the towers that have so far been entitled to proclaim “World’s Tallest Building”. Two pioneering inventions from the second half of the 19th century, steel-frame construction and the elevator, paved the way for the construction of the world’s first skyscraper. The combination of the two was first used in 1908 in the 187-meter-tall Singer Building in New York.



This was just the beginning of a world ever reaching to build higher and higher.  It was just recently announced that China will be building the world’s tallest buildings that will also clean the air.  The pink Phoenix skyscrapers (the color was chosen to reflect China’s sunsets) were designed by the British architect firm Chetwoods, according to CNN. The largest tower will stand 172 meters, beating Dubai’s Burj Khalifa for the name of the world’s tallest building.  


Click here for the full story and photos of the history of the world tallest buildings.



Photos of the Week

In case you were not aware, there is an actual competition called the World Interior of the Year Awards.  The submissions come from unique and stunning interiors ranging from an underground cavern to luxurious hotels, restaurants and shopping malls.  The judges have narrowed down the finalists of which you can find here.  Two of the finalists caught my eye because they involved vertical transportation.  You can find them both below.


Although hundreds of people pass through the room everyday, the famous Escalator Hall in the Harrods department store in London still has an usual charm – dominated as it by a huge yellow chandelier that is meant to represent the sun.


The South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute in Adelaide is packed with glass and steel, and beautiful elevators.

The South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute in Adelaide is packed with glass and steel, and beautiful elevators.


Stuck In The Shaft!



An overweight thief in southwest China got stuck in an elevator shaft for eight hours after he tried to make his escape.  The crook, Yi Fu, attempted to rob residents of an apartment building but was eventually chased off.  The 226-pound thief actually eluded them by climbing into an out-of-service elevator shaft.  Unfortunately for Fu, he was a bit too big to get through a tiny opening that lead to the roof.  None of the residents heard his cries for help until the next morning when firefighters spent an hour trying to free him.  There’s something you don’t see everyday!    

You can read the full story here.  


We think we found the issue with the “up” escalator!


Earlier this month, an “up” escalator at a shopping complex in central Florida malfunctioned. When maintenance crews came to diagnose the problem, they found this little guy inside the stairs. The story has a happy ending: Animal control trapped him several days later and he was returned to the woods, and the escalator is back up and running. For more information about how raccoons are learning how to navigate urban areas, check out this PBS documentary, Raccoon Nation.



Soccer Fan Records Elevator Ride With The Argentina World Cup Team

Ok, so you’re in Brazil for the 2014 FIFA World Cup and you’re dying to catch a glimpse of the soccer stars.  Where is the best place to be to catch a glimpse of your favorite team?  The elevator, of course!  That’s just where one lucky fan got an up close and personal encounter with the Argentina World Cup team and Lionel Messi.  And, lucky for us, he videotaped it. 

Have you ever been in an elevator with a celebrity?  If so, let us know by posting a comment.  


Photo of the Week

Gearless Armature being rewound
First place winner in the 2014 Elevator World Photo Contest
Machines & Components Category
Submitted by Renown Electric Motors & Repair, Inc.  

The photo shows a gearless armature from elevator hoist motor being rewound.  To view all of the winning photos click here.

Thanks to everyone who participated!


Friday Fun – Logic Elevators

Screen Shot 2014-06-13 at 11.01.26 AMWe all need a break from the daily work routine every know and then, right?  And, what better day to do just that than a Friday!  This game, called Logic Elevators, will test your brain…in a good way.  The object of the game is to simply help get all 5 characters out of the elevators.  Well, it’s just not that easy.  Here are the rules:

1. The elevator doors will open only when all the elevators are between the 21st and 25th floors.

2. There are two buttons, +8 (up) and -13 (down), that will be activated only when 2 elevators are selected.

3. The building has 49 floors.

4.  Good luck!

5. Play the game here.


KONE remodel included guide shoes, Rope Grippers

Brakes that are part of the Rope Gripper system are ready to grip the cables and halt movements.

ELEVATOR WORLD recently toured KONE’s elevator modernization project within the Wells Fargo building, formerly the Waterman Steamship Corp. building, in downtown Mobile, Alabama. The system, originally installed by Elevator World, Inc. founder William C. Sturgeon’s company — Mobile Elevator, in the 1940s, got a complete upgrade that enhanced both comfort and safety. Among improvements were new guide shoes — visible on the left, and Hollister-Whitney Rope Grippers to prevent elevators from falling “up.”


An Endangered and Unique Form of Vertical Transportation

Wikipedia defines the paternoster lift as a passenger elevator that consists of a chain of open compartments (each usually designed for two persons) that move slowly in a loop up and down inside a building without stopping. Passengers can step on or off at any floor they choose.

The first paternoster was built in 1884 and was more common throughout Europe.  However, in many countries the construction of new paternosters is no longer allowed because of the high danger of accidents (people tripping or falling over when trying to enter or exit).  A few companies have added computer-controlled cars and normal elevator doors to alleviate some safety concerns.  Although there are still numerous units spread throughout Europe, the paternoster has certainly been put on the endangered list.

This video demonstrates a fully operational unit, built in 1913, and located in Copenhagen, Denmark.  Share your videos and photos of paternosters in your area or travels and we will post them on this blog!

Video uploaded to YouTube by Heritage Elevators.