News

July 21, 2016

TOSHIBA JOHNSON LAUNCHES NEW MODEL FOR INDIA

Toshiba Johnson Elevators (India) Pvt. Ltd. has launched its “ELCOSMO-TJ” elevator series, specially developed for the Indian market’s upper-middle segment, including low- and mid-rise buildings, such as mid-sized office buildings, residential buildings and the retail segment. Toshiba notes the latter is a rapidly growing, large-volume zone for the elevator market in the country. Featuring high-efficiency permanent-magnet synchronous motors and LED lighting, the ELCOSMO-TJ has a load capacity of 544-1020 kg (8-15 persons) and travels at a speed of 1-1.17 mps. It will be distributed by both Toshiba Johnson and collaborating company Johnson Lifts Pvt. Ltd.

KONE SHOWCASES ULTRAROPE INSTALLATION IN VIDEO

KONE is showcasing installation of its UltraRope® in an approximately 4-min. video, in which Sky City Executive Manager Arron Money and KONE Manager for New Equipment and Modernization Terry Viccars explain how the technology serves the 328-m-tall Sky Tower in Auckland, New Zealand. In a press release promoting the video, KONE observes “the groundbreaking technology is made of a carbon-fiber core and a high-friction coating, and [that it is] light, durable, strong and has a lifetime of at least twice that of steel hoisting ropes.”

STRIKING MIXED-USE DEVELOPMENT FOR LITHUANIAN CAPITAL

Lords LB Asset Management plans to develop a 20,000-m2 mixed-use project designed by Daniel Libeskind featuring a 24-story tower (18 stories atop a six-story podium) in Vilnius, Lithuania, designboom reports. Known as Downtown Tower-K18B, the mixed-use complex is a cluster of jagged, glassy shapes resembling natural quartz crystal. It is situated steps away from the city’s top attractions, such as the White Bridge, Neris River and Old Town. Libeskind won an international design competition to build it.

July 20, 2016

EW FOCUSES ON MAINTENANCE

ELEVATOR WORLD will focus on the hot topic of maintenance for its October issue. The magazine will receive bonus distribution at NAESA International Wisconsin Elevator Symposium, being held on October 13-14 in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, and Euro-Lift, taking place on October 18-20 in Kielce, Poland. The deadline for submissions is August 15. To participate or for more information, contact the EW Editorial Department at phone: (251) 479-4514, ext. 30 or email: editorial@elevatorworld.com.

STOCKHOLM’S TALLEST ON THE DRAWING BOARDS

A development that includes a tower as tall as the tallest building in Stockholm, Sweden, at 40 stories and 120 m is on the drawing boards after Dreem Arkitekter and ÅWL were announced as co-winners of a new urban plan for the Kista area, ArchDaily reports. The mixed-use complex encompassing three residential neighborhoods has 67,000 m2 of residential and commercial space, including the 40-story apartment tower. The tower’s height would be the same as that of Stockholm’s current tallest building, Victoria Tower. Plans are expected to be finalized this fall.

HADID-DESIGNED QATAR TOWER A “DESERT FLOWER”

Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA) plans to build a 38-story, 70,000-m2 hotel/residential building shaped like a desert hyacinth with a nine-pointed, fluid shape, in Lusail City in Qatar, dezeen reports. Expected to be complete in 2020, it is one of two Hadid buildings commissioned by developer Al Alfia Holding for the city, located approximately 23 km north of Doha, before Hadid passed away earlier this year. ZHA is now partnering with engineering firms Arup and Atelier Ten on the project, set to include 120 apartments and 200 hotel rooms.

July 19, 2016

LERCH BATES TAPPED FOR CHINESE-THEMED VEGAS RESORT

Lerch Bates has been hired to design the vertical-transportation and façade-access systems for phase one of Resorts World Las Vegas (RWLV), a Chinese-themed entertainment center taking shape on the north end of the Las Vegas Strip. Construction began in 2014 and is expected to wrap up in 2019. RWLV will include three hotels with more than 3,100 rooms, a rooftop sky park, an observation deck, a panda exhibit, multiple restaurants featuring regional Chinese cuisine, more than 100,000 sq. ft. of gaming, retail and a nightclub on 84 acres formerly home to the Stardust Resort and Casino. The developer is The Genting Group.

LIFTS, ESCALATORS PART OF INDIAN RAIL STATION REVAMP

Eleven escalators, six elevators and three moving walks are part of a major upgrade planned at Habibganj Station in Bhopal City, India, The Times of India reports. One of eight railway stations selected by railway officials to undergo upgrades, Habibganj Station is also set to get significant new parking and infrastructure. Union Minister for Railways Suresh Prabhu said the renovated station will be “better than an airport.” The project is the first to be done through a public-private partnership and is expected to take approximately three years.

KAPIOLANI RESIDENCE MOVES FORWARD IN HONOLULU

South Korean developer SamKoo Development held a groundbreaking on July 13 for its 45-story, 484-unit residential tower Kapiolani Residence on Kapiolani Boulevard in Honolulu, Pacific Business News reports. Approximately 60% of the units in the US$200-million tower are set to “affordable,” starting at US$272,000 each, with the remainder market priced. On the ground, there will be 3,500 sq. ft. of retail geared toward tenants. SamKoo reports sales have been strong and hopes to start another tower nearby with almost identical height and capacity. Kapiolani Residence is scheduled for completion in summer 2018.

CONTRACTOR WORKING ON UC ELEVATOR FOUND DEAD

A 42-year-old man performing maintenance on an elevator in the Medical Sciences Building at the University of Cincinnati (UC) in Cincinnati was found dead on July 15, various news outlets, including USA Today, report.  The elevators in the building were closed over the weekend as an investigation, led by the UC Police Department, was underway. The man was a 20-year employee of the local branch of a major OEM and was conducting repair work on the elevator.

July 18, 2016

BERKLING SUCCEEDING SHARMA IN KONE’S ASIA-PACIFIC REGION

Effective October 1, Axel Berkling succeeds Neeraj Sharma as executive vice president (EVP) for KONE’s Asia-Pacific Region, which consists of all KONE’s business in this area, excluding China. Sharma, who has been with KONE since 2009, first as managing director for KONE India and then as EVP for the Asia-Pacific Region, is returning to India to pursue other interests outside the company. Berkling, who joined KONE in 1998, has held various roles, including managing KONE’s service business in Germany and serving as managing director of KONE Germany. He will also become a member of the executive board.

“SLICK ADDITION” TO TEL AVIV SKYLINE

SkyRise Cities describes the 53-story, 255-m-tall Azrieli Sarona office building as a “slick addition” to the Tel Aviv, Israel skyline. Soaring toward a 2017 completion, the glassy tower was designed by Moshe Tzur Architects and Town Planners and includes 100,000 m2 of office space, 10,000 m2 of retail and a seven-story parking garage. The structure twists around two different axes, shifting to the sea as it ascends. Ample public sitting areas and entrances to the commercial components are planned at ground level, facing the historic Sarona neighborhood and Menachem Begin Street, respectively. The structure is to become the largest office building in Israel.

SOM’S “TOBLERONE” TOWERS GREENLIGHTED IN LONDON

A pair of 39-story towers designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) that includes more than 400 residences, 50,000 m2 of office space, 1,628 m2 of retail, a 350-seat auditorium and public space has received approval from officials in London, Building Design reports. The “Toblerone” buildings (nicknamed thusly due to their shape) are set to have multilevel, landscaped rooftops, and developer London & Properties plans to include “affordable” housing. The towers are planned at Elephant and Castle in the Southwark area on the site of a 1980s office building, library and hostel.

July 15, 2016

PAIR OF 46-STORY RESIDENTIAL TOWERS MARK L.A. PROJECT

With US$1 billion in financing secured, the developer of the Century Plaza Hotel property in Los Angeles hopes to start construction over the summer on what is expected to include two 46-story, residential skyscrapers, a 400-room hotel and 100,000 sq. ft. of retail, The Real Deal reports. The developer is Woodridge Capital Partners CEO Michael Rosenfeld’s Next Century Partners, and the architect is Pei Cobb Freed Partners, along with an array of consultants. Hyatt formerly operated the hotel on the property, but a new operator will be named once redevelopment is complete.

OFFICE TOWERS FOR LONG ISLAND CITY

Tishman Speyer, with codeveloper Qatari Diar of Doha, Qatar, is planning to build One and Three Gotham Center office towers at 28-07 Jackson Avenue in the Queens Plaza area of Long Island City, New York YIMBY reports. Designed by MdeAS Architects of New York City, the towers are planned at 27 stories and 396 ft. tall, containing 1.1. million sq. ft. Joining the 22-story One Gotham Center, they will be connected by a four-story base containing retail and parking. Construction is expected to start in early 2017, with completion anticipated in 2017.

WOMAN SERIOUSLY INJURED IN AUSTRALIA ESCALATOR INCIDENT

A 29-year-old Sydney woman was seriously injured in late June as a result of falling two floors (approximately 11 m) from a shopping mall escalator in Queensland, Australia, the Daily Mail reports. The woman remained in a coma for six days, and suffered serious head injuries and broken bones. She remains hospitalized. The mall property manager stated it is working with local authorities to ascertain exactly what happened.

July 14, 2016

OLEO TO OPEN INDIA FACILITY

U.K.-based manufacturer Oleo International will open its first production facility in India near Bengaluru International Airport at the beginning of the year. Impetus for the construction on the 50,000-sq.-ft building is to meet an increase in demand for its elevator buffers. It will concentrate primarily on manufacturing buffers for the elevator market. Oleo already has a production facility in China, in addition to its main site in Coventry, U.K. It manufactures buffers for the global elevator, rail and industrial industries.

CHINESE ELEVATORS GET ADS

China Information Technology, Inc. (CIT) has received an order of 800 elevator digital advertising terminals in China. They are to be installed in Tianjin, Shenzhen, Xiamen and Quanzhou office buildings, hotels, shopping malls and residential communities during this quarter. In addition to sales revenue on the terminals, CNIT is expected to receive recurring monthly fees for the life of the units via e-Elevator, the company’s elevator maintenance system providing building management entities with real-time data monitoring services and providing elevator passengers with alarm and emergency functions.

LIFEWAY MOBILITY BUYS FREEDOM LIFTS

Lifeway Mobility recently announced becoming the majority shareholder of Freedom Lifts, a Danielson, Connecticut-based provider of stairlifts, wheelchair lifts and elevators. According to Lifeway Mobility, the acquisition is part of its strategic plan to enhance consumer services and offer value-added products. Freedom Lifts will continue to operate under its own brand. While Lifeway Mobility operates throughout southern New England, Freedom Lifts has served the Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island area for more than 30 years.

July 13, 2016

SCHINDLER OUTFITTING PAIR OF BALI RESORTS

PT Berca Schindler Lifts is providing a total of 40 units to the Hotel & Residence Mandarin Oriental and the Hotel Waldorf Astoria in Bali, Indonesia, developed by PT Bali Raga Wisata and set to be opened in 2016 by Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group and in 2017 by Hilton Worldwide, respectively. Designed by Jean-Michel Gathy of Denniston International, the Mandarin property will be outfitted with 22 5500 and 14 3300AP elevators. The Waldorf Astoria, designed by SCDA, is set to get four 5500 elevators.

EKSTEDT TO BECOME CFO OF ALIMAK GROUP

Per Ekstedt is set to become chief financial officer (CFO) of Alimak Group AB on January 1, 2017. He is currently CFO at Swedish technology company Mycronic, and has held CFO positions at Selecta, Group4 Securicor and Siemens Business Services. Outgoing Alimak CFO, Stefan Rinaldo, will continue with the company as chief operating officer. Alimak Group CEO Tormod Gunleiksrud stated Ekstedt’s broad experiences with global companies promises to benefit Alimak Group.

TWO STATIONS IN INDIAN STATE GETTING ESCALATORS

Two railway stations in India’s Karnataka state are getting new escalators, The Times of India reports. Hubballi station is set to inaugurate new “up” escalators between platforms two and three, and four and five. The Hindu reports at Mysuru station, escalators are in the testing phase at the main concourse, platform one at the booking concourse and platform six. Railway officials welcome the upgrades, as they promise to ease travel for people such as the handicapped and elderly.