News

May 22, 2015

HEIS-TEK WINS BIG OILFIELD ELEVATOR ORDER

Heis-Tek, the Norwegian arm of Alimak Group, has won a SEK164-million (US$19.7-million) order to supply Statoil’s Johan Sverdrup oilfield in the North Sea with elevators for its risers and living quarters. Delivery is planned in 2016-17. The order includes options for Statoil to acquire elevators for the following oilfields: Johan Castberg in the Barents Sea, Snorre 2040 in the Norwegian Sea and Peregrino off the Coast of Rio de Janeiro. Companies in the Hordaland region of Norway will supply the majority of manpower and goods.

MIT HONORS SCHINDLER FOR DIGITIZATION

Schindler’s innovative digital business solutions have earned it the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT) CIO Leadership Award for 2015. Described by MIT as a digital “frontrunner in its industry,” Schindler globally harmonized its IT systems and business processes over the last several years. It now processes and analyzes all escalator and elevator data, utilizing the Internet of Things concept to make the data available to customer call centers, field technicians and customers at all times.

IN MEMORIAM: DAVID A. SCHETTIG

David A. Schettig of Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, passed away on April 24 at the age of 72. He retired with 30 years of service as an elevator mechanic, and was a member of International Union of Elevator Constructors Local 10 in Washington, D.C. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Beverly; children, Sandra and Michael; and five grandchildren. Services were private. Memorial donations may be made to the Tunnell Cancer Center, 18947 John J. Williams Highway, Rehoboth Beach, Delaware 19971.

ELEVATOR WORLD OFFICES TO OBSERVE MEMORIAL DAY

The offices of Elevator World, Inc. will be closed on Monday, May 25, in observance of the Memorial Day holiday in the U.S. They will reopen on Tuesday, May 26.

May 21, 2015

WITTUR HIRES CAMPBELL AS HR DIRECTOR

Wittur Group has hired Roger Campbell as corporate director of Human Resources, reporting directly to CEO Walter Rohregger. Prior to joining Wittur, Campbell was global HR director at GKN Land Systems. Previously, he held HR leadership positions at Danaher Group, Tektronix Inc., ACCO Brands Inc., Kidde Fire and Otis. He graduated from Manchester University with honors with a B.Sc. degree in European Studies. He resides in the U.K.

SFMTA’S PLAN TO UPGRADE ELEVATORS, ESCALATORS

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) has a US$2-million plan to overhaul elevator doors and perform other maintenance to improve accessibility at the transit system’s Church, Castro and Forest Hill stations, The San Francisco Examiner reports. Availability of the system’s 28 escalators dropped from 96% to 85% within a year. Elevator availability also fell, 98% to 90% within a year. A presentation of the plan included testimony from disabled riders who rely on vertical transportation within the system.

IN MEMORIAM: JOHN A. GUTOWSKI

John A. Gutowski of Long Valley, New Jersey, and a native of New York City (NYC), passed away on April 18 at the age of 51. He was president of Morris County Elevator, Inc. and a member of the International Union of Elevator Constructors Local 1 in NYC. He was known for his hard work and integrity and had a passion for vintage Corvettes, his Harley-Davidson motorcycle and sports. He is survived by his wife of 20 years, Connie; children, John, Jessica and Christopher; mother, Connie; father and stepmother, John and Sandra; and brothers, Glenn and Allen. A celebration of his life was held on April 23. Memorial donations may be made to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

May 20, 2015

INDIA PETITIONER SAYS HIS STATE LACKS LIFT OVERSIGHT

A man in Ghaziabad, India, has filed a petition calling for the state government in Uttar Pradesh to provide greater oversight of lift installation, maintenance and licensing, The Times of India reports. The petitioner said recent accidents have brought attention to the problem, and residents of high-rise apartment buildings are in particular danger. He would like to see Ghaziabad, Noida and Greater Noida have guidelines such as those in neighboring Delhi and Haryana, and to comply with National Building Code lift standards.

PAIR OF 20-STORY TOWERS PART OF TEXAS OFFICE CAMPUS

A pair of 20-story towers connected by a parking garage is part of Liberty Mutual Insurance’s planned office campus in Plano, TexasThe Dallas Morning News reports. Developed by KDC and designed by Omniplan, the towers are set to contain more than 1 million sq. ft. of office space and ground-level retail. They are part of a larger, US$325-million development on 9.3 acres at the Dallas North Tollway and State Highway 121. Liberty Mutual plans to occupy its new offices in 2017.

GLASSY TOWER PROMISES TO HELP REVIVE NYC NEIGHBORHOOD

New renderings of a pair of mostly residential towers planned on the site of an old grocery store at 250 South Street on the Lower East Side of New York City (NYC) show a glassy structure offset by variegated planes standing approximately 700 ft. tall adjacent to a shorter structure, New York YIMBY reports. Developed by Extell and designed by Adamson Associates, the project is comprised of 56- and 13-story towers housing approximately 640 residences, commercial space and ground-floor retail. A 2019 completion date is anticipated.

May 19, 2015

CIBSE GUIDE D SEMINAR, LIFT SYMPOSIUM ABSTRACTS ANNOUNCED

The CIBSE Guide D: Transportation Systems in Buildings 2015 seminar and official launch of the fifth edition of the vertical-transportation reference will be held on September 22 at Highgate House in Northampton, U.K. Authors will provide an overview of each chapter and highlight new material. Registration for the seminar can be made here. It is being held a day before and at the same location as the 5th Symposium on Lift & Escalator Technologies. The CIBSE Lifts Group and University of Northampton have released a list of abstracts for the latter event, set for September 23-24. The 22 presentations announced are from industry experts, and their abstracts can be found here.

CTBUH BRINGING 2015 CONFERENCE TO NYC

Motivations and mechanisms driving multinational investment in skyscrapers around the world and the technology that makes such construction possible will be among topics examined during the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) 2015 International Conference in New York City (NYC) on October 26-30 at the Grand Hyatt. ThyssenKrupp Elevator, Schindler, KONE and Otis’ parent company, United Technologies, are among this year’s sponsors. In selecting NYC as the host city, CTBUH observed that it exemplifies a resurgence of post-recession tall-building construction taking place in cities all over the world.

TORONTO HARBOR CRUISE TO BENEFIT EESFC

The Elevator Escalator Safety Foundation of Canada (EESFC) is now taking registrations for its 7th Annual Toronto Harbor Cruise, departing on the Showboat on August 13. Tickets on or before the early bird deadline of June 15 are CAD125 (US$110) and CAD150 (US$132) after the date.

May 18, 2015

MITSUBISHI ELEVATOR ANNOUNCES BANGALORE FACTORY

Citing strong domestic demand of 47,000 units in 2014, Mitsubishi Elevator India Pvt. Ltd. on May 14 formally announced plans to build a 25,400-m2 factory and 41-m-tall test tower in Bangalore, India. The factory, capable of producing 5,000 units annually, is expected to come online in July 2016. The project builds on the company’s existing presence, which started in 1995 with sales through local distributors. With a particular focus on NEXIEZ-LITE, an elevator designed for the low- to mid-rise market introduced in India in April 2014, Mitsubishi Electric aims to increase its competitiveness in terms of price and delivery time with the new factory.

NETHERLANDS’ LONGEST ESCALATOR IN AMSTERDAM METRO 

The longest escalator in the Netherlands is being built as part of Amsterdam’s new Noord-Zuid metro route, one of approximately 90 units that are part of the project, Dutch News reports. At 47 m long, the escalator will surpass the current record holder, a 43-m-long unit that is also within the metro. Netherlands’ new longest escalator will offer passengers a travel time of 1 min., 20 s. for a one-way trip up or down. The new metro route is scheduled for completion in 2017.

TWO LIFTS, TWO ESCALATORS FOR ERODE, INDIA, STATION

Two lifts and two escalators will be commissioned at the Erode Junction in Indian Railways’ Salem Division, The Hindu reports. The move was in response to a request by Erode official N. Sivanesan. The vertical-transportation improvements are among upgrades including water coolers, identification cards for disabled people and automated ticket machines at various locations within the railway system that were announced during a Railway Users Consultative Committee meeting on May 8 in Salem, India.

May 15, 2015

APEX LIFTS HOSTS APPRENTICES

London’s Apex Lifts recently welcomed 10 lift apprentices from Training Centre Direct to its Bexleyheath offices and Sidcup manufacturing facility to learn about potential careers and how Apex operates. The apprentices heard presentations from Service Manager John Roberts, Project Manager Peter Gruzinski and Service Supervisor Steve Minns. They watched in-depth lift-engineering videos and got an up-close look at how Apex handles health and safety issues, equipment, service and maintenance. Roberts said the aim is to motivate the apprentices to pursue careers in the industry.

ONLY ONE CERTIFIED ELEVATOR INSPECTOR IN GUAM

There is only one certified elevator inspector for the U.S. Territory of Guam, and its Department of Public Works is looking to change that by offering an accelerated certification process, KUAM News reports. Earlier in May, the department administered tests and expects to issue certificates within a few weeks. At 159,358, Guam’s population is small, but it is a popular tourist destination with numerous hotel high rises. It is easily accessible from many parts of Asia.

44-, 48-STORY TOWERS FOR DOWNTOWN TORONTO

Shanghai-based developer Greenland Group broke ground on 44- and 48-story hotel/residential towers at the Westinghouse site in Toronto in May. “King Blue by Greenland” is to include a new 10,000-sq.-ft. home for Theatre Museum Canada in the downtown locale. Market Watch reports the developer is building four of the top-10 tallest buildings in the world and has 23 “ultra high-rise buildings currently built or in construction.” Occupancy of the towers is set for 2018.

May 14, 2015

BRYCO CONTROLS TO REPRESENT CARLO GAVAZZI

Carlo Gavazzi Inc. has appointed Bryco Controls, Inc. as its sales representative firm for the Alabama, Tennessee, Mississippi and Florida Panhandle territories. Bryco Controls has been in business for more than 33 years and can be contacted through its website.

NAESA CEU CLASS IN SOUTH CAROLINA

NAESA International has set a 1.0-Continuing Education Unit (CEU) class toward satisfying the QEI 10-hour requirement. The 10-hour Code Update Seminar will take place on May 27 at the Sheraton Myrtle Beach Convention Center Hotel in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, from 8 a.m. until 7 p.m. To register, contact NAESA at phone: (360) 292-4968 or visit its online training calendar.

EIGSC PLANS MEETING, FUNDRAISER GOLF TOURNAMENT

The Elevator Industry Group of Southern California (EIGSC) plans to host speaker Mike Johnson of Gorman Co., Inc., during its meeting on May 19 at 11:30 a.m. Gorman plans to speak about hydraulic oil analysis and how that relates to elevator performance. EIGSC also plans to host a golf tournament on June 19 to benefit the Elevator Escalator Safety Foundation (EESF). It is scheduled for the California Country Club in Los Angeles (L.A.), and will include food and drink carts. An awards ceremony and raffle will directly follow the tournament. For more information about either event, contact Ray Miller of EIGSC and register for the golf outing using this form.