Energy-Efficiency Program Includes Escalator Renovations

Zack McCain (right) receiving the award from Richard Gregory (left)

The Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI) in Anne Arundel County, Maryland, is to receive several renovations to improve its energy efficiency, including the upgrade of 64 escalators and moving walks. In addition, BWI recently unveiled plans for a 505-kW solar system to be installed atop its parking facility. Energy from its panels will be supplied to Pepco Energy Services and are said to provide US$400,000 in energy savings and produce more than 600,000 kWh of energy per year. The Maryland Board of Public Works approved a US$21-million contract with Pepco to implement an energy-efficiency program for BWI and Martin State Airport. The program will also include various green efforts, including light replacements.

Applied Elevator Offers Inspections, Home Elevators In Denver

Applied Elevator has announced it is offering QEI inspections for commercial elevators in Denver. The inspections are intended to ensure the elevators are safe and have not been altered without compliance to codes and regulations. The company’s QEI inspectors have been certified through the Elevator Industry Work Preservation Fund, which is approved by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Applied also assists with protecting liability and business investments, and provides elevator sales and service in Denver, Colorado Springs, Loveland, Greeley, Ft. Collins and Pueblo, all in Colorado.

Applied also announced it now provides customized home elevators in Denver. Applied’s product line includes home elevators, stair lifts and wheelchair lifts, all of which are designed to meet homeowners’ needs. In addition to installation, Applied provides ongoing maintenance. The company offers various types of accessibility lifts, all of which comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act and are designed to meet American Society of Mechanical Engineers national standards. A variety of models, platform sizes, trim, exiting/entering configurations, gates, doors and finish colors are available.

Maxton Cet Session

Maxton Manufacturing Co. held a Certified Elevator Technician (CET®) session at Bleyle Elevator in Pacifica, California, on April 21. Maxton covered topics related to elevator control valve maintenance, technical and hands-on troubleshooting, elevator performance measuring and adjustment procedures. “I’ve been in the elevator industry for 27 years, and I learned a lot today. The hands-on TA4M elevator simulator really helped us see how the adjustments operate the elevator,” Erik Bleyle said of the session. According to Karl Keller, Maxton’s marketing director, “This group was our youngest so far, and they showed a real thirst and excitement for learning the valve.” Bleyle Elevator maintains and repairs various types of elevators in the California Bay Area.

Warfield & Sanford Hires Project Executive

Warfield & Sanford Elevator Co., an independent elevator company in the Washington, D.C., area, has hired Chris Fisher as project executive. Fisher will be responsible for overseeing the company’s project management department. He brings more than 11 years of elevator-industry experience and previously worked at KONE as a district installation manager and branch manager. Prior to joining KONE, Fisher served as senior project manager and branch manager for ThyssenKrupp Elevator. He has a BS in Engineering & Management from Clarkson University.

Naesa, State Of Wisconsin Partner

NAESA International and the State of Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services will partner to host the 2012 Elevator Symposium in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, on November 1-2. The event will enable inspectors, mechanics, consultants and others to network in the industry and learn about the latest code issues and applications. On October 31, a QEI exam will be held in conjunction with the symposium. For more information, visit website: www.naesi.org.

Kone Acquires Eagle Elevator

Eagle Elevator Corp., an independent elevator service company in Minneapolis, has been acquired by KONE Corp. Eagle Elevator has a large maintenance base and specializes in modernization and repair work. The companies will combine their elevator operations under the KONE name over the summer. According to Vance Tang, KONE executive vice president and area director, the venture will bring a wide range of building projects, including hospitals, corporate headquarters, industrial facilities, residential buildings, universities and hotels, under the company’s purview.  

Schindler Contract, Mta Update

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s (MTA) East Side Access project for the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) is currently under major construction, but completion is not slated until 2018. The US$7.3-billion project is the U.S.’ largest mass-transit project and is expected to service some 80,000 commuters per day once the station is completed. In 2010, Schindler was awarded a US$70.2-million elevator and escalator contract to design, install and provide long-term maintenance for the station. According to The Wall Street Journal, the escalators will be manufactured at Schindler’s facility in Clinton, North Carolina.

Previously, maintaining large banks of escalators was challenging for the LIRR, and often,  many escalators were out of service, which is one of the main reasons MTA selected a private vendor for the project. The LIRR currently has only 19 escalators on its entire line; the new station will include 47 escalators, some stretching 180 ft. long and 90 ft. underground. The increase in units will allow the station to maintain passenger flow while certain units are out of service for maintenance and repairs.

Mccain Receives Award For Asme Efforts

Zack McCain, an industry veteran and founder of elevator consultancy Zack McCain & Associates, received an award on April 4 for his efforts toward the ASME A17.1 Maintenance, Repair & Replacement Working Committee. The award was presented by Richard Gregory of Vertex Corp. at the committee meeting held in Dallas. Gregory also deigned the award, which was made by Tom Sybert of C.J. Anderson & Co. McCain has been a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) for many years and worked as a registered engineer for much of his career. He served as a course director for ASME and has written several articles for ELEVATOR WORLD, in addition to several industry-related books.

Austin Development

Developer Tramell Crow Co. has drafted plans for its new US$500-million development in downtown Austin, Texas. To be located where the city’s Green Water Treatment Plant once sat, the development would include apartments spread out in two towers, each at least 30 stories tall; a 17-story hotel; and a 28-story office tower. The four buildings combined would have 82,000 sq. ft. of retail space. According to one of Tramwell Crow’s principals, the apartment towers could “be under construction by the end of the year.”

River Point Office Tower For Chicago

The River Point office tower in Chicago’s West Loop will rise 45 stories, overlooking the Chicago River from east of Canal Street and north of Lake Street on the western edge of the city’s business district. To cost an estimated US$300 million, the high rise is expected to help satisfy the demand for downtown office space and an influx of tenants from the suburbs and outlying cities.

Developers of the downtown riverfront high-rise project, led by Hines Interests LP and landowner Larry Levy, have planned the building since at least 2008, when designs called for a 51-story tower. River Point is expected to generate 1,000 union construction jobs, 3,400 permanent office jobs and a 1.5-acre riverfront park. According to ABC 7 News, the project will be the first speculative office building in Chicago since 1998 and the business district’s first new office space since 2010. Construction is expected to begin this fall, with completion in 2016.

Outdoor Elevator To Be Repaired, Maintained

The three-level outdoor pedestrian-bridge elevator installed in 2002 in Springfield, Massachusetts, has been in and out of operation since it opened. However, in 2011, the state’s Architectural Access Board notified the city it was in violation of state regulations to provide handicapped accessibility to the river walk and bikeway. In April, the board and other city officials met and came to an agreement to repair and regularly maintain the elevator to ensure it is in operation from April 1 to November 1 each year. The agreement includes a formal plan, but it was not final as of May. In addition to repairing the elevator, the city will install signs and address parking concerns, followed by a state inspection.

New Jersey High-Rise Developments

The Fort Lee Planning Board in New Jersey is working on the approval processes for two high-rise developments in downtown Fort Lee. The first project, which has already been approved, is known as Phase 1 and will be developed by Fort Lee Redevelopment Associates LLC. The project will include two 47-story residential towers, a restaurant, a museum, a movie theater and a public park. Despite the height discrepancies local residents have expressed, project supporters say the buildings will help the local and regional economies.

The second phase would be built by Illinois-based Tucker Development and feature 175,000 sq. ft. of retail space, 475 high-rise residential units, a hotel and a movie theater. The planning board met in April to review the second phase’s building proposals. Construction start dates were not available at press time.

70-Story Hotel To Feature High-Speed Elevators

Developer Korean Air has revealed details pertaining to its 70-story hotel project in downtown Los Angeles. Although the design was not final in May, the hotel will be equipped with high-speed elevators, which will take passengers to the top floor’s lobby. Construction was expected to start this summer, beginning with the demolition of the site’s current building, the former Wilshire Grand Hotel. According to the Los Angeles Times, the hotel’s first seven floors will include shops, restaurants and ballrooms, the next 20 stories will feature office space, and the remaining floors will include 900 hotel rooms.

Lirr Work Progresses

The lower concourse of Manhattan, New York’s Grand Central Terminal is being prepared to receive 17 escalators that will be installed in four large wells to transport Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) passengers to the surface from a two-level terminal. LIRR officials note work on the escalator wells and other parts of the US$7.3-billion East Side Access Project to bring the LIRR into Grand Central Terminal is continuous. The project calls for two 22-ft.-diameter, two-level tunnels and four train platforms more than 100 ft. underground.

The completion of the terminal could benefit Connecticut commuters and is a prerequisite to long-term plans of allowing trains in the Hudson, Harlem and New Haven lines to travel through the Hell Gate line in Bronx, New York, to Penn Station in New York City. The plan also includes building new stations in Co-Op City, Parkchester and Hunts Point, along with revamping other stations, allowing Bronx residents to commute to Connecticut. While work under Grand Central is on schedule, complications in drilling tunnels under the Sunnyside, New York, station may push the project’s completion date back from 2018 to 2019.

40-Story Building For Seattle

As of May, Holland Development was set to start construction in June on a 40-story apartment tower for Seattle. The building remained unnamed, though a location at the southwest corner of Pine Street and Ninth Avenue, west of Paramount Theatre, had been chosen. Slightly taller than the nearby 37-story Aspira, the 440-ft. high rise is to contain 386 units in 13,560 sq. ft. and is one of six ongoing Seattle projects expected to add 1,426 apartments to the city. Weber Thompson is the architect, and Holland Construction is the general contractor.

A prediction by Dupre + Scott Apartment Advisors forecasts 27,800 units to open in the tri-county area between May and the end of 2015. Developers plan to add 12,000 units over the next five years in Seattle alone. The company’s data is based on strong job growth for the next two years, especially in downtown Seattle, thanks in large part to the presence of Amazon. Holland expected to also start a 286-unit project at 801 Dexter Avenue North in June and a 134-unit project at 1201 Mercer Street in July. Its 236-unit Coppins Well project at 1200 Madison Street is to open in August, and its 284-unit project at 901 Dexter Avenue North is to open on October 1.

NAESA Seeking Accreditation With Ansi

Due to ASME’s recent decision to discontinue their accreditation program for QEI certifying organizations, NAESA International has begun the process to seek accreditation through the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

This will not have any effect on either the June or December renewal period. Inspectors are still required to obtain their CEUs prior to renewing. The current renewal period is May 1- June 30 (without penalty); July 1-31 with a late fee equal to that of the initial recertification fee. 

ANSI is a private non-profit organization that oversees the development of standards for many different industries, including the elevator industry. The standards used in the elevator industry ensure a consistent, uniform groundwork for elevator personnel to work from, providing safer elevators, escalators and other vertical transportation devices for the public as well as the workers themselves. It is NAESA’s goal to complete the accreditation process with ANSI well before ASME discontinues their accreditation program on December 31, 2013, thereby relieving some of the effects ASME’s decision may have on elevator inspectors. NAESA has every intention to continue business as usual and hopes to make this transition as smooth and seamless as possible.

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Elevator World | July 2012 Cover