Elevators For a Social Project in Rio De Janeiro



The picturesque morros (low, rounded hills) covered by vegetation, so common in Brazil’s eastern geography, provide cities like Río de Janeiro with an undulated landscape and imposing vistas. But many of these morros have been the settlements of so-called favelas (populous slums that are part of the urban landscape) for years.

During your reporter’s visit to ThyssenKrupp Elevadores Brasil, she became acquainted with the company’s social programs developed in its plants and other social environments. This is the case of the Social Project in the Morro Cantagalo in Río de Janeiro. ThyssenKrupp Elevadores supplied and installed vertical transportation to facilitate the favela inhabitants with access to the city’s metro net-work and other public transportation.

ThyssenKrupp Elevadores built five elevators for the Project Complejo Rubem Braga, a job promoted by the government of Río de Janeiro State and carried out by the metro company RíoTrilhos, to link the Cantagalo and Pavão/Pavãozinho communities (both located on the Morro de Cantagalo) with the General Osorio metro  station. This is one of the Río de Janeiro subway stations in the Ipanema district in the southern area of the city.

The building project consists of two towers. In the first, two panoramic elevators were installed. They serve two stops and can transport 30 persons each, to travel 53.2 meters at 1.75 mps. By means of these two elevators and through two footbridges, it is possible to reach the first level of the highly populated morro slope.

In the second tower, there are two other elevators that also attend two stops with a 20-passenger capacity each. They run at 1 mps along 19 meters. These elevators allow morro inhabitants access to the public-transportation system available on the hilltop after traversing a third footbridge.

Safety has not been overlooked. The elevators feature emergency doors at intermediate levels in the event of entrapment. A total height of more than 72 meters is reached with the addition of the two towers, and the four elevators can transport 100 passengers at a time. There is a fifth elevator installed at the administrative offices of Centro de Administração da Estação Cantagalo. This  machine-room-less Synergy elevator has three stops, an eight- passenger capacity and a 1-mps speed.

The Complejo Rubem Braga opened in June 2010. Its equipment facilitates the movement of around 10,000 Cantagalo and Pavão/Pavãozinho inhabitants, who, before this improvement, had to climb a long, steep and unsafe stairway. Now, they can use the metro system and other public transportation quickly and safely. The easy access from the General Osorio metro station has become useful for people who want to have a look at the project and admire the landscape from the Mirante da Paz  Mirador, built atop the machine room in the first tower. From this belvedere, tourists and residents coming from other Río de Janeiro neighborhoods can enjoy the vistas of Copacabana, Arpoador, Ipanema and Leblon beaches, as well as the Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas lagoon. Reported by Carmen Maldacena, EW Correspondent, who extends special thanks to Isabel Munhoz Silvares, journalist.


Ontario Housing Development

In April, Toronto-based Serenity Development announced plans to convert St. Catharines’ Union Gas building into 120 studio and one-bedroom rental suites. The six-story building at 15 Church Street will receive a US$20-million makeover that will include modernized elevators and upscale amenities. The building will also receive a redesign of its exterior, though new designs are still in the conceptual stage. The converted building could be open for residents by summer 2012.   

EESFC Toronto Harbour Cruise

The Elevator Escalator Safety Foundation of Canada (EESFC) will hold its third-annual Toronto Harbour Cruise on August 24. The event will take place aboard the Mariposa Belle, located at Queen’s Quay Terminal. Boarding will begin at 6:30 p.m., with the cruise lasting from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. All proceeds from the event will benefit EESFC’s mission to educate the Canadian public on the safe and proper use of elevators, escalators and moving walks through informational programs. EESFC’s goal is to educate 45,000 second graders with the Safe-T Rider® program this school year. For more information, contact EESFC at website: www.eesf.org/events.  


Kirin Bay Set to Begin

Construction of Kirin International Holding, Inc.’s Kirin Bay development is scheduled to begin in Xingtai in the second quarter of this year. The residential community will be built in three phases on a land area of around 660,000 square meters and consist of eight 26-story high rises, and schools, a hotel, office buildings and apartments.

On April 9, the company celebrated the grand opening of the project and had 189 homebuyer contracts signed. Completion of all development phases is scheduled for April 2015.


Kone to Equip Viking Line

KONE has signed a contract with STX Finland Oy for the delivery of marine elevators to STX’s new cruise ferry. The ship will be built for Viking Line ABP at STX Turku shipyard in Finland and is described to be “an eco-efficient, new-generation vessel.” An assessment of the passenger traffic was completed. Fourteen of its MonoSpace® machine-room-less elevators and MiniSpace® elevators with compact machine rooms will be delivered. All units are powered by EcoDisc® and equipped with regenerative drives, which utilize the elevator braking energy and generate it back as electric power.

The 214-m-long cruise ferry for Viking Line will have capacity for 2,800 passengers and be operated by a 200-member crew. The ship has been specially designed for the shallow waters of the Swedish and Finnish archipelago. Besides minimized wave forming and noise generation, the ship will have no marine emissions and very low aerial emissions. It will be delivered to Viking Line in January 2013. The contract includes an option to deliver the same type of elevators for a sister ship, the construction of which will be decided this year.


Otis Celebrates 100 Years

Otis celebrated 100 years of operation in Germany in March. As part of Otis’ global sustainability commitment, The Way to Green™ (ELEVATOR WORLD, April 2011), it will commemorate the anniversary by planting 100 trees outside its offices in Berlin and throughout the district of Reinickendorf. Otis Germany’s first elevator installation was at the Hamburg Elbe Tunnel in 1911. There are four elevators in the tunnel, two for down and two for up traffic. Two of the elevators are equipped with vertical gates.

Interlift 2011 Sees Strong Participation

Registration for Interlift 2011, to be held on October 18-21 in Augsburg, has seen strong participation thanks to the quickly recovering world economy. The event has already reached a record number of space rentals in com-parison to the previous event, and never before has its trade-fair space been rented out so early. Organizers believe that Interlift 2011 could surpass 500 exhibitors. Two large participants from Italy and China have contributed to the increase in rental-space needs. ANICA (Italian National Association of Elevator Component Manufacturers) will participate in the event for the first time with a 500 m2 presentation, while the Chinese Elevator Association will utilize 700 m2.

Limited space is still available for Interlift 2011. For more information, contact Joachim Kalsdorf of VFA-Interlift at Rahlau 62, D-22045 Hamburg, Germany; phone: (49) 0-40-727301-50; fax: (49) 0-40-727301-60; e-mail: info@vfainterlift.de; or website: www.vfa-interlift.de.


Kone Introduces Safety Mascot

In March, KONE India launched The Chronicles of Liftman, a lighthearted animation intended to educate the public about elevator safety. The new concept was presented to the residents of Ramaniyam Samarpann apartments in Thiruvanmiyur.

As the use of elevators in everyday life becomes increasingly common, KONE plans to take The Chronicles of Liftman across India to educate as many elevator users/passengers as possible. It believes that animated characters have proven their effectiveness in conveying a wide range of messages across varying subjects and age groups.

Sreelakshmi Menon, director Marketing & Communications, KONE India, said:

“Safety awareness is the key to preventing accidents.  Interestingly, researchers have found that people remember 50% more of what they see than what they hear.  Cartoons can be effectively used to illustrate dangerous situations that might be impossible to capture on film in real life. In line with our vision ‘KONE delivers the best people-flow experience,’ we conceptualized the most  effective way to connect with the end users and communicate the importance of safe usage of elevators. The ‘Liftman’ who helps prevent danger and maintains safety is conveyed in an engaging manner.”


New City Plan for Dublin

Dublin City Council’s plan for the regeneration of Dublin’s southeast inner city call for a high-rise building opposite the Custom House. The plan replaces a previous strategy for the area that would have permitted a 22-story building at Tara Street station and the demolition of several buildings, including the Department of Health headquarters at Hawkins House and the social welfare offices at Apollo House on Tara Street, both built in the 1960s.

However, the new plan (passed in December 2010) makes George’s Quay one of only four sites in the city where high-rise buildings would be permitted. It would allow the area to contain a building greater than 50 m tall to “promote investment, vitality and identity.” It would prevent any such “landmark building” from intruding upon the character of the main square at Trinity College.


Mitsubishi Electric Aids Victims

Mitsubishi Electric announced in April that it and its employees have donated JPY274,313,678 (US$3,366,205) to aid and support victims affected by the March 11 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. Contributions from the company’s employees in Japan were matched through the Mitsubishi Electric Socio-Roots Fund, then passed on to the Central Community Chest of Japan. The contribution is in addition to Mitsubishi Electric’s previous JPY500-million (US$6.13-million) corporate donation.  Established in 1992 as one of Japan’s first employee- donation matching programs, the fund involves the company’s operations nationwide and has attracted the participation of over 1,000 employees each year. As of March, the fund had provided over JPY580 million (US$7.12 million) to some 1,400 social-welfare facilities and programs.

Tokyo Sky Tree Progress

Sumida, Tokyo’s Tokyo Sky Tree (ELEVATOR WORLD, MAY 2010) (formerly known as New Tokyo Tower) is well on its way to becoming the highest self-supporting steel tower in the world. Construction on the 634-m tower recently surpassed 601 m. Upon completion, the tower will be one of the tallest freestanding structures in the world.

Designed by Nikken Sekkei, Ltd., construction of the Tokyo Sky Tree commenced in July 2008. Toshiba Elevator was contracted to install six high-speed, large-capacity elevators in the building. Of the six elevators, four are 40-person elevators with a maximum speed of 600 mpm and two are service elevators with a travel distance of 464.4 m, among the fastest and the longest in Japan, respectively. The elevators will take visitors up to the first observation platform, a height of 350 m, in less than 50 sec.

The chainmail-style tower is planned as a hub for Japan’s terrestrial digital broadcasting and includes a restaurant and two observation decks. Its slender  silhouette was inspired by historical Japanese architecture formed of sori (con-cave curves) and mukuri (convex curves), with a tri angular base gradually transforming into a cylindrical spire. In addition to its striking appearance, the tower has wind- and seismic-resistant elements. Its vibration con-trol system employs a central column – a design used to stabilize the pagodas of traditional Japanese architecture. This system counters swaying caused by earthquakes and strong winds. Tokyo Sky Tree is  expected to open in spring 2012.  

Toshiba Releases Fiscal Results

Toshiba Corp. has released its consolidated and non-consolidated results for the fiscal year (FY) 2010 to March 31, 2011, and its consolidated results for the fourth quarter (January–March 31, 2011) of FY2010. The company noted that despite financial uncertainties in parts of Europe, the global economy continued to recover. Most notably, driven by domestic demand, the Chinese and other Asian economies continued their expansion. While there are still concerns, the global economy is expected to continue its recovery. In addition, the impact felt by Toshiba from Japan’s March 11 earthquake was relatively limited, and efforts are being made to minimize its impact on production.

The company’s Social Infrastructure segment, which includes elevators, saw a continued high profit level de-spite a sales decline to JPY2.26 trillion (US$27.3 billion). The decline is due to downturns in market demand, price erosion and reported weak performances. Segment operting income stood at JPY137.1 trillion (US$1.7 billion), close to the same level as the previous year. Results for the fourth quarter saw sales increase to JPY772.5 billion (US$9.3 billion). Segment operating income increased to JPY90.7 billion (US$1.1 billion). The 2011 forecast for the Social Infrastructure segment expects an increase in sales and operating income.

Mitsubishi Electric Announces Fiscal Results for 2011

Mitsubishi Electric Corp. has announced its consolidated and nonconsolidated financial results for the fiscal year 2011 (April 1, 2010-March 31, 2011). Although the business environment in this period saw some severity with the yen appreciating against foreign currencies and material prices rising, the global economy showed improvement due to recovery mainly in emerging countries. However, business conditions were affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, which resulted in the suspension and cutback of production. Consolidated net sales for the fiscal year increased to JPY3.6 trillion (US$44.5 billion), while nonconsolidated net sales increased to JPY2.3 trillion (US$28 billion). The Energy and Electric Systems business segment, which includes elevators and escalators, saw a 1% decrease in sales to JPY1 trillion (US$12 billion) and an operating income of JPY83 billion (US$1 billion), an increase from the previous year. The building-systems business experienced increases in both orders and sales from the previous fiscal year, with demand for elevators and escalators experiencing a gradual recovery in Japan, as well as growth in the Chinese and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations markets. 

Impacts from the aforementioned earthquake have made the company’s business environment unclear, making it difficult for Mitsubishi Electric to foresee its consolidated earnings for the first half of the 2012 fiscal year (April 1-September 30, 2011). Not only will there be a direct impact on production and logistics, but also on consumer spending and economies through the supply chain. However, demand from reconstruction  efforts can be expected. Under these circumstances,  Mitsubishi Electric is striving to recover its production and continue to strengthen and increase profitability in each business segment. The company will push forward with its growth strategies, including the expansion of its global business, promotion of environment-related businesses and strengthening of its social-infrastructure business. While Mitsubishi Electric intends to announce its earnings  forecast for the first half of 2012 as soon as it can be formulated, the company expects consolidated net sales for 2012 to increase to JPY3.7 trillion (US$45.7 billion) and income before taxes to decrease by 5% to JPY200 billion (US$2.5 billion). 


Makati City Orders Seismogram Installation

The Makati City Department of Public Works and Highways has directed high-rise building owners to install seismograms that detect and monitor ground movement during an earthquake, as well as the structures’ response during a typhoon. High rises under construction and those in the design stage must include seismograms, while it was recommended that existing buildings install the de-vices. Buildings over 50 m tall (approximately 15 stories) completed without seismograms installed will not receive occupancy permits from the city government. With 100 high rises and around 30 more under construction in Makati, it is believed that the installation of seismograms will strengthen the city’s resilience against disasters.


Doha Expansion Includes Transit System

Located 15 km north of Doha, Lusail City is a new district being developed on an area of around 38 km2. The master plan revealed various plans for residential, commercial, retail, and mixed-use projects. One of the major projects is the Lusail Light Rail Transit system, which is to include 24 stations along 30 km of track. Qatar Railways Co. will oversee the transit development in a joint venture with Parsons International + AECOM. In addition, the new district is scheduled to host the 2022 Fédération Internationale de Football Association World Cup, with five sports facilities being developed exclusively for the event. Lusail Real Estate Development Co. is the master developer of the overall project.

South Korea

KLC Announces First Graduating Class

The Korea Lift College (KLC), (www.klc.ac.kr) one of the first elevator and escalator institutes in the world, opened its doors for the first time in March 2010 to 220 students (ELEVATOR WORLD, March 2010). Now, KLC has announced that it will see its first 80 graduates in the spring of 2011. Located in Geochang province, the school was founded as part of the province’s plans to transform itself into the world’s “Elevator Valley.” With 26 professors from various elevator fields and utilizing the latest technology and facilities, KLC offers students five courses of study: Mechanical Design, Electrical Design, Mechatronics (a combination of mechanical and electrical engineering), System Management and Safety Management. Each course of study is designed to provide field experience working with vertical-transportation equipment and educate students with technical knowledge. Managed by the Korea Elevator Safety Institute, KLC has enrolled over 250 students in its first year.

Sri Lanka

Colombo High-Rise Housing

The government has taken action to construct addi-tional high-rise community housing in Colombo to accom-modate around 75,000 families, half of the city’s popula-tion. The government’s goal for the next two years is to relocate 30,000 of the 75,000 families to new community housing schemes. Land for these new centers has been earmarked, and discussions with construction companies have been held. Plans have also been submitted to the Urban Development Authority for approval, with construction expected to begin shortly. Construction of other housing complexes is also underway. Another 680 units will be built at the Dematagoda housing complex, along with a 3,128-unit complex at Salamulla, near Battaramulla.

The families facing relocation currently reside in shanties or are without homes. Many of these structures are unauthorized and centered on strategic areas around public waterways and the sides of railway tracks. Through the relocation program, it will be easier for the government to maintain clean waterways and create more public spaces around the canals. Relocation of slums and shanty-towns is to preserve the city’s aesthetics, while creating a healthier environment for its people.


Inelex 2012 Announced

The INELEX 2012 Elevator and Elevator Technologies Fair is scheduled to take place on May 25-27, 2012. The expo, in its eighth year, will be held at the Izmir International Fair Center in Izmir. INELEX 2012 will serve as a platform for companies that want to increase their exports and production, and establish valuable connections with companies and customers from around the world. Organized by Efor Fair Organization in cooperation with the Chamber of Electricity Engineers Izmir Branch, the event will feature an elevator technology symposium, along with many more social and cultural activities. For more information, contact the event organizer at e-mail: info@eforfair.com or website: www.eforfair.com.  


Growing Markets in China, India

Due to rapid urbanization and booming infrastructure development, India has become the second-largest mar-ket for elevators in the world behind China, with market demand in the two countries expected to escalate over the next 20 years. Currently, the global market accounts for 500,000 units per year. China comprises the majority of those units with 285,000 annually, while India de-mands around 50,000 units. For some perspective, North America only accounts for 15,000 units. Otis expects to build 70,000 units for India over the next three years, a major increase when compared to the 6,000 it built last year. In anticipation of supplying more elevators to India, Otis has begun the expansion of its elevator factory in India. The new factory is expected to be three times the size of its existing facility.

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Elevator World | July 2011 Cover