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July 6, 2020

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thyssenkrupp Elevator announced it will move its headquarters in the first quarter of 2021 from Essen to Düsseldorf, the capital of North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. The OEM will occupy more than 9,000 m2 in the Wings Building, which is owned by Commerz Real and near the Düsseldorf International Airport. There will also be 500 m2 of outdoor space where colleagues can meet and exchange ideas. "The relocation reflects our independence as a global company,” thyssenkrupp Elevator CEO Peter Walker said. “Moreover, it provides us with the opportunity to create headquarters that are precisely designed to meet the criteria of a modern and efficient globally operating company, while giving us the chance to open up many new perspectives regarding the way of working for our employees."


In an effort to ensure elevators are well-maintained and meet updated safety requirements, the government of Ontario, Canada, is seeking public input on proposed regulatory changes to the Technical Standards and Safety Act, 2000. The government is working with the independent administrative body Technical Standards and Safety Authority to solicit input online through August 4. Ontario Minister of Government and Consumer Services Lisa Thompson says the ministry “wants to ensure all Ontarians have a voice in helping us create stronger rules to protect them.” There are approximately 58,700 elevators in Ontario, of which nearly 20,000 are in residential buildings. The agencies say they also want to help consumers, including those with accessibility needs, make more informed choices as homebuyers and renters.


In partnership with the Urban Tech Hub @ Co. business incubator, the NYC Department of Buildings (DoB) has launched the first-ever Building Code Innovation Challenge, which seeks ideas from the real estate sector, construction industry and general public on improving worker safety, building design, construction and regulation. The deadline to apply is August 21. A team led by the DoB and its newly created Code Innovation Committee will review applications and select five semifinalists who will present their ideas at the DoB’s Build Safe/Live Safe conference on September 25. Winners will be announced later in the fall. The team is looking for innovations that, among other things, minimize construction noise, dust and vibration; improve fire resistance; and improve safe work practices that prevent the spread of COVID-19.


Using freight elevators to move students and staff through buildings is among adjustments universities in downtown Chicago are considering to limit the spread of COVID-19, WBEZ reports. Using freight elevators for passengers is being mulled at Loyola University Chicago near Water Tower Place. Officials at National Louis University, which has buildings of six and seven floors across from the Art Institute of Chicago, are directing students and staff to use the stairs if they are able and limit elevator capacity to two. At Columbia College in the South Loop, four students are allowed per elevator, and each must stand in a corner and wear a facemask. As schools are set to open in the fall, what was once a selling point — higher learning in multistory buildings in the heart of the city — has, for the moment, turned into a liability, the source observes.


The Vancouver City Council has approved a downtown zoning change, giving the green light to a 29-story, Kohn Pedersen Fox (KPF)-designed commercial tower, The Architect's Newspaper reported on June 26. The project at 601 West Pender Street is being developed by Reliance Properties and will feature premium office space atop a retail base sheltered by a vegetated pedestrian canopy. The top two floors will hold a host of amenities, including a lounge, a sauna, steam rooms, a wellness center and a 16,000-ft2 rooftop deck. The tower will replace a six-story parking garage at the site. The building is scheduled for completion in 2025.

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