Way Down South in the Land of Plenty


What fun it is to write about the South and crush a few misconceptions in the process! We are not slow, even in the heat of an Alabama summer. Our Kaija Wilkinson, in Prognosis Positive, writes that business is strong in the South. Jobs are plentiful for skilled labor, with Atlanta, Charlotte and Miami leading the way. Schindler is very bullish on the South, noting it has the greatest number of construction projects in the preplanning stage. Both Otis and KONE talk about the number of modernization jobs they have. Florida has experienced the fastest growth in construction of any state. OEMs have often made headquarters in the South with KONE’s R&D in Texas and now thyssenkrupp coming to Atlanta with its headquarters and the tallest U.S. test tower. A flurry of smaller articles highlights our Special Regional Section on the South:

  • West Virginia’s Newly Accessible Courthouse: DC Elevator transforms a judge’s bench and witness stand.
  • What a Difference a Year Makes: Vantage opens a service center in Miami and is replicating the model around the U.S. and Canada.
  • Southern Foothold: Born in the South, Tampa-headquartered Oracle Elevator will expand its footprint north and west.
  • Elevator Cabs Help Give The Statler New Life: The elevators in this Dallas hotel were innovative in its heyday, being the first to pipe in music. A recent modernization upgraded the cabs and kept them unique.
  • The “A” Team: Atlantic Elevators ably services N.C.’s Outer Banks.
  • Durable, Attractive Cladding: Metal Shield was recently used by Dallas Area Rapid Transit to upgrade the elevators and cover graffiti.

Second to talking about the South, I love the Photo Contest every year. It keeps getting better and better. The results this year are amazing. It would be hard to pick a winner, so I’m glad our readers did the voting online. My favorite category is “Who Reads ELEVATOR WORLD?” The winner is hilarious (with some books upside-down), but the best is my friend Lien Randle with her feet up reading EW.

Angela C. Baldwin reported on Liftex 2019 and ELA Conference 2019 in London. The European Lift Association (ELA) Conference came first with the theme of “Lifts and Escalators in a Digital World.” It was opened by ELA President Roberto Zappa, who noted that digitalization is having a profound effect on moving people. It was followed by Liftex 2019, a triannual tradeshow that saw its largest crowd yet and more than 115 exhibitors of great diversity. Elevator World, Inc. hosted a champagne toast thanking the U.K. industry for the great support after our purchase of Elevation (now EW UK).

In Once in a Lifetime, EW looks at the vertical transportation in NYC Supertall One Vanderbilt, next door to Grand Central Station. Wilkinson (with photos by John Dimaio) tells that One Vanderbilt has a Schindler team hard at work due to have the project completed in 2021.

In Memoriam this month is way too full of people I know and admire — in particular, Ed Bonardi and Hans Arens. Bonardi has two sons in the industry, Michael and Steven, so the Bonardi name will go on in the elevator world. Hans Arens showed me many elevators around the world and worked side-by-side with me at German expos. He was a quiet man with a wicked sense of humor who always suggested we “go have some cake.”

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Elevator World | August 2019 Cover