Making It New Again


“Elevator equipment across America is aging and will need attention to remain safe and reliable.” — Åsa Christina Magnusson

When we announced the focus topic for this month, Maintenance and Modernization, we were hardly prepared for such enthusiasm — 10 articles, with three on maintenance and the rest on mod jobs. In some areas like NYC, code changes are driving many modernizations, and maintenance, too, is getting a push from the ASME A17.1/CSA B44 adoption of a mandatory maintenance control plan (MCP). Our cover features NYC’s Hudson Yards, which, according to Ralph Newman in What’s New in Modernization, is forcing other existing landlords to upgrade the appearance and function of their properties and elevators to compete. Also, in this month on modernization:

  • 21st Century Upgrade by Julio César Santos: Thirty-year-old elevators in the Central Bank of Brazil were modernized by Villarta Equipamentos for greater security and service.
  • A Total Team Effort by Åsa Christina Magnusson: The author details a giant 160-elevator mod job taken on by Champion Elevator and Vantage Elevator Solutions — the largest ever for both companies.
  • Elevator Modernization: When Is It Time? by Laurie Axium Kohl: This article explains the factors to evaluate before modernization — equipment lifecycle and age, reliability and current usage.
  • Energy and Operational Saving Strategies by Alfonso Molina-Spínola: The author speaks to the advantages of variable-voltage changes on escalators and moving walks.
  • Gearless DC Machines Should Be Replaced by Risto Kontturi and Dr. Eero Keskinen: In this Elevcon paper, the authors make a case for modernization, as DC motor technology has not been used in new elevator installations in the past 20-25 years.
  • Modernization for the Metro by Aurore Tran Van. The Paris subway goes from two huge elevators to four in the same space, with much of the work done at night.

And, on the maintenance side:

  • It Pays to Be Consistent by Charlie Slater: Facility managers are urged to focus on long-term prevention, rather than short-term repairs.
  • Method for Managing Maintenance by John W. Koshak: In this paper from the 2018 International Elevator & Escalator Symposium, the author details an electronic system for compliance with ASME A17.1/CSA B44 Section 8.6, which prescribes a maintenance control program.
  • Finally, our historian Dr. Lee Gray, in Modernization and Maintenance: 1956, describes the level of detail in a G.A.L. Electro-Mechanical Service packet prepared for Elevator Maintenance Co. with intricate hand drawings and required maintenance.

The National Elevator Industry Inc. (NEII) has rebranded and restructured to be a more focused and proactive voice for the industry. In the article Future Ready, Kaija Wilkinson talks with Executive Director Karen Penafiel in the 105-year- old association that represents 80% of the hours worked in the elevator industry. On a similar note, many of the companies that form NEII are mentioned in Global Top Ten Elevator Companies by Elevator Observation translated by our China Correspondent Peng Jie. In this group, the positions have changed very little in the past couple years. Take a look to see “who’s on top.”

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Elevator World | May 2019 Cover