News

Enjoy reading the most important industry news items happening in Europe on a weekly basis.  Simply click the tab with the corresponding weekly news that you wish to read.  If you would like to submit your own news please email us at editorial@elevatorworld.com. You can also subscribe to our monthly newsletter, Elevator World EuroNews. EW EuroNews is emailed monthly and includes expanded news items, new product announcements and mini articles specific to this market packaged in a unique design. If you would like to keep up-to-date on international industry news on a weekly basis, sign up for our ELENET newsletter.

Week of 5/13/19

IPO FOR THYSSENKRUPP ELEVATOR PART OF NEW STRATEGY

The executive board of thyssenkrupp AG has proposed to the supervisory board its elevator business be launched in an initial public offering (IPO), rather than splitting the company in two as thyssenkrupp Industrials and thyssenkrupp Materials. The move is part of what the executive board describes as a “fundamental strategic realignment” announced on May 10. The move is expected to end antitrust proceedings of the European Commission related to thyssenkrupp Steel Europe AG’s alleged role in suspected cartel agreements. thyssenkrupp and India’s Tata Steel assume the planned joint venture will be blocked by the commission in light of concerns not resolved by a market survey done in the wake of several concessions by the steel giants. thyssenkrupp plans to reintegrate its Steel Europe business back into the group in the third quarter of this fiscal year. “The economic downturn and its effects on business development and the current capital market have led to the separation not being able to be realized as planned,” the company said. “Instead, thyssenkrupp will fundamentally realign itself to significantly improve operating performance.”

ROME METRO ESCALATORS GREENLIT AT ONE STATION

Escalators at the Spagna Rome Metro station were greenlit by Italy’s transport ministry, resulting in the station reopening on May 7, Wanted in Rome reports. Because its escalators are the same type as those that collapsed on March 21 at the Barberini station, the Spagna escalators had been closed since March 23 so they could be checked by technicians. Both the Barberini and Repubblica stations remain closed, which local business owners previously described as “disastrous” for business. Repubblica has been closed since October 2018, when dozens of people were injured when an escalator suddenly accelerated.

180-M-TALL TRIANGULAR TOWER FOR PARIS PROPER

The first 100-m-plus-tall tower approved in 46 years by the Administrative Court of Paris is a 41-story, 180-m-tall triangular tower designed by Herzog & de Meuron. To be located in the Porte de Versailles neighborhood, in the south of the city, Tour Triangle was approved with modifications by the Council of Paris in mid-2015. The Urban Developer reported it was first unveiled in 2008 and "was quickly met with fierce criticism" due to its size, height and design, leading to its rejection in 2014 and delays by opponent groups. It would become the city's third tallest structure, after the Eiffel Tower and the Montparnasse Tower. Five thousand construction workers would be employed, with another 5,000 employee occupants upon completion. Construction is expected to begin late this year to target wrapping up in 2024 for the Paris Olympics.

EW 2019 PHOTO CONTEST DEADLINE EXTENDED TO MAY 15

The deadline for entries in the 2019 ELEVATOR WORLD Photo Contest has been extended to May 15. Submit your photos here for consideration by a panel of EW judges, who will choose up to 20 finalists from each category. Those finalists will then be presented online during the month of June, where readers can vote to determine each category’s winner. Winners and runners-up will be featured in the August 2019 issue of EW and highlighted online. All qualified submissions will be posted in a special photo contest gallery online, as well. Winners will receive US$250 cash or the equivalent in Elevator World, Inc. educational products or advertising. Details can be found here.

LIFTEX 2019 IN LONDON: PROMISING MORE THAN EVER

Interested parties are invited to preview LIFTEX 2019, scheduled on May 15-16 at ExCeL in London. Organized every three years by the Lift and Escalator Industry Association (LEIA), this year’s show features more exhibitors than ever before, including 30 attending for the first time, for a total of approximately 120 U.K. and international exhibitors. There will also be more free seminars led by industry experts than ever before, with topics including standards development and implications, safety, escalators and codes. LEIA states LIFTEX is the “international destination for manufacturers, suppliers, installers and specifiers of lift and elevator products and services,” and observes that thousands of products, many of which have never been seen before, will be on display.

EFESME-HOSTED LIFT FORUM COMING UP

The European Federation for Elevator Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (EFESME) is organizing the launch of the SBS Lift Forum on “Digitalisation and the Lift Sector” on May 23 in Brussels at the Small Business Standards (SBS) premises. It follows the SBS Annual Conference, taking place at Bip, house of the capital region and also in Brussels, the previous day. EFESME hopes the forum will be an evolution of last year’s iteration. As such, it aims to present how digitalization can have different impacts and consequences and is part of the organization’s 2019 activities centered on digitalization and cybersecurity. The program can be downloaded here, and registration can be made here.

Week of 5/6/19

TALLEST BUILDING IN BIRMINGHAM, U.K., TO RISE IN NOVEMBER

Developer Court Collaboration said ONE Eastside, a 51-story tower containing 667 residential rental units in Birmingham, U.K., will start rising in November ahead of an anticipated completion in late 2022, World Construction Network reports. Taking the place of the CEAC Building in Eastside, it will be the city's tallest and close to a new HS2 rail station with direct links to London and numerous Birmingham landmarks such as Grand Central. The plan includes public areas, while resident amenities will feature a rooftop sky bar, a cinema and fitness facilities. In the spring, Court Collaboration was assembling a global investment team.

THYSSENKRUPP PROVIDING 123 UNITS FOR ISTANBUL CRUISE DOCK

thyssenkrupp Elevator is providing the vertical-transportation equipment for Istanbul’s Galataport harbor dock, which is expected to open in 2020, the company recently announced. During a first phase of the project, thyssenkrupp is installing 66 elevators and 21 escalators. A second phase will include 36 additional units. The port facility will offer a terminal, offices and food courts to cruise ship passengers. It will have the capacity to dock three large ships at a time and handle up to 15,000 passengers a day. Annually, the facility will serve up to 1.5 million passengers and crew members. Istanbul, Turkey’s largest city, is world-renowned for its cultural and heritage sites.

ESFI RELEASES WORKPLACE SAFETY INFORMATION  

Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI), a nonprofit educational and training organization, has released new workplace safety information to reduce electrical injuries. The collection includes instructional videos, infographics, tips, templates and tools employers can use to promote electrical safety in the workplace. ESFI cites that more than 21,000 workers in the U.S. have been injured, and 1,500 have died in workplace electrical accidents since 2008.

SOM WINS APPROVAL FOR EAST LONDON DEVELOPMENT

Architecture firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) has received approval from planners to proceed with a residential development that would bring 796 homes to East London and would include a 23-story tower as its centerpiece, BD Online reported on April 16. During its most-recent meeting, the Newham council’s strategic development committee approved the plan, which was drawn up for developers Mount Anvil and the London International Exhibition Centre. At an earlier meeting, the committee deferred on a decision for the project, which would sit on a 1.03-ha. site next to the ExCel center. Sticking points included concerns over the project's scale and massing, as well as questions about its plans for affordable housing. Approval came after planning officers noted the project had “evolved positively through early engagement” with the council’s Design Review Panel. The project still will require the backing of London Mayor Sadiq Khan.

EW 2019 PHOTO CONTEST DEADLINE EXTENDED TO MAY 15

The deadline for entries in the 2019 ELEVATOR WORLD Photo Contest has been extended to May 15. Submit your photos here for consideration by a panel of EW judges, who will choose up to 20 finalists from each category. Those finalists will then be presented online during the month of June, where readers can vote to determine each category’s winner. Winners and runners-up will be featured in the August 2019 issue of EW and highlighted online. All qualified submissions will be posted in a special photo contest gallery online, as well. Winners will receive US$250 cash or the equivalent in Elevator World, Inc. educational products or advertising. Details can be found here.

IEES CALL FOR ABSTRACTS

The deadline for the second-annual International Elevator and Escalator Symposium’s (IEES) call for abstracts is June 14. The IEES Technical Committee and will then review them and share their assessments on July 8. The technical and educational symposium, to be held at Bally’s Casino and Hotel in Las Vegas on December 3-4, is organized by Liftinstituut Solutions and Elevator World, Inc. This year’s theme is safety of elevators and escalators during their life cycle: maintenance and inspections. Papers can be submitted here; for more information, visit website.

ESCALATOR MODERNIZATION ORDER FOR THYSSENKRUPP IN FRANCE

thyssenkrupp won a contract to modernize 53 escalators on Line 2 of the Lille Metro in northern France, the "successful result of a longstanding customer relationship and a meticulously prepared offer," according to thyssenkrupp Head of Media Relations Dr. Jasmin Fischer. Public transport operator Transpole awarded the up-to-six-year contract to modernize the approximately 30-year-old units on Christmas Eve 2018. The contract builds on an existing relationship with Transpole, which, in spring 2018 extended a 350-unit maintenance agreement with thyssenkrupp for the Lille Metro. Fischer observed thyssenkrupp's relationship with the customer reaches back to 2010, when thyssenkrupp took over the Lille section of the system from CNIM.

CIBSE LIFTS GROUP MANCHESTER MEETING COMING UP

The Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) Lifts Group is holding a meeting on June 12 at 4-6 p.m. at the Manchester Chamber of Commerce, Elliot House, Manchester, U.K. Speakers include Michael Bottomley with “The British Lift,” Pamela Gray with “Ampetronic – Assistive Listening in Lifts” and Adam Scott with an update and debate on codes and standards. Those wishing to book are asked to do so at website.

70TH ANNUAL NAEC CONVENTION & EXPO IN GRAND RAPIDS

The National Association of Elevator Contractors (NAEC) announces its 70th Annual Convention & 2019 Exposition is coming up in Grand Rapids, Michigan, on September 16-19. The largest vertical-transportation industry event in North America, the event will host more than 200 companies exhibiting their products and technology, and provide networking and education opportunities. A variety of sessions will allow participants to earn continuing-education credits, and roundtable discussions will provide a chance to discuss relevant issues and share experiences in small group settings. Social functions, including the newly created main event CELEBRATE, will be focused on celebrating NAEC’s 70th anniversary and solidifying industry camaraderie. For more information about attending or exhibiting, contact Megan Ragan at phone: (770) 760-9660 or email.

Week of 4/29/19

TWEAKED “CUCUMBER” GETS THE GREEN LIGHT IN WEST LONDON

After being in the works for at least seven years, a 46-story residential tower nicknamed the Paddington Cucumber won approval in April from city planners in west London, Building reports. Designed by Apt and officially known as 1 Merchant Square, the tower will be the tallest in developer European Land's six-building Merchant Square project north of Paddington Basin. The original plan was tweaked to omit a seven-floor hotel element in lieu of more homes and to increase the height of an adjacent building from 15 to 21 stories. The new plan, which still requires approval from London Mayor Sadiq Khan, will bring 426 new homes to the market.

RESIDENTIAL LONDON SKYSCRAPER GETS BOOST FROM LOAN

A US$226-million loan has given a boost to developer Damac International for Damac Tower or Aykon London One, a 50-story luxury residential tower designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox (KPF) in London's Nine Elms district near Battersea Power Station, the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat reports, citing Architects' Journal. With the façade approaching the 20th floor this past spring, the Jenga-like tower is slated for completion in 2021. It will contain 450 homes with interiors inspired by fashion designer Versace. Describing the financing as "a vote of confidence in the U.K. and Damac's track record," Damac Chairman Hussain Sajwani said the developer is seeking further investment opportunities in London.

ALIMAK LONDON BMU ORDER BUILDS ON EXISTING RELATIONSHIP

Alimak Group subsidiary CoxGomyl has landed an order from Chalegrove Properties for two 5000 Series Building Maintenance Units (BMUs) for construction of The Landmark Pinnacle in London's Canary Wharf, which, at 75 stories, will be one of the tallest residential towers in the city. The US$880,374 order builds on an existing partnership with Chalegrove on the project, for which Alimak is providing construction hoists, and "showcases the benefits of the integrated offering after two large acquisitions," according to Alimak. Engineering work is underway, with the BMUs scheduled for delivery in mid-2019.

MIXED-USE TOWERS EMPHASIZE COMMUNITY IN THE HAGUE

A pair of 150- and 180-m-tall towers atop a seven-story plinth housing residences, offices and communal facilities were designed by Meccano to emphasize community in The Hague, Netherlands, as the city projects its population to grow from 525,000 to more than 625,000 over the next 20 years, 88 Design Box is among news outlets to report. The Grace is strategically located to encourage inner-city densification in the Central Innovation District, bounded by three train stations. Developed by Movement Real Estate and the Van Deursen Group with consultants including Arup, the facility features a raised roof garden, a restaurant and arcades that provide protection from the elements.

Week of 4/22/19

ORONA HOLDS AGM, APPROVES CONSOLIDATION PROJECT

Spanish manufacturing cooperative Orona recently held its annual general meeting (AGM), in which it approved the first phase of the "Orona EU" project, aiming, it said, "to consolidate the company as the only European lift operator capable of competing with the world's four major lift multinationals." This phase will run from 2019 through 2022 with the objective to boost its revenue to exceed EUR900 million (US$1.01 billion) and its headcount to above 6,000. It will focus on the challenges of digital transformation and innovation, which it sees as widespread throughout Europe. The following phases are planned for 2022-2026 and 2026-2030, respectively. By the end of the project, Orona expects to be present in more than 14 countries (three more than currently) with 8,000 employees and annual revenue near EUR1.2 billion (US$1.35 billion). Details can be found in its 2018 annual report.

ROME METRO ESCALATOR BREAKDOWNS IMPACT BUSINESS, IMAGE

Inoperable escalators have closed three Rome Metro stations in the central part of the city, a situation one retailer described as “disastrous” for business and the city’s image, euronews reports via Reuters. Another store owner said a 50% drop in business is forcing her to close. One closed station is Repubblica, where 24 people were injured in an escalator collapse in October 2018. Azienda per i Trasporti Autoferrotranviari del Comune di Roma, the company that runs the metro, said it hoped to open that station in time for Easter. It did not set opening dates for the other two stations. Transport officials observe the escalators are custom, making replacement parts difficult to find.

“TRANSFORMATIVE DEVELOPMENT” DESIGN SELECTED FOR PARIS

Youssef Tohme, Buzzo Spinelli, Hardel Le Bihan and Adjaye Associates are part of a team of architects that conceived the winning design for the Brunesceau development on the Seine River in southeast Paris, the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat reports, citing the Architects' Journal. To be built on a 10,000-m2 former brownfield site, the development will include skyscrapers and 25,000 m2 of office space, 800 housing units and 20,000 m2 of retail. Architect David Adjaye, who designed a 100-m-tall (or roughly 30-story) residential tower for the project, called it "truly transformative," featuring massive public terraces and using mostly renewable or reclaimed energy.

PROJECT TO BRING TALLEST BUILDING TO LONDON BOROUGH

Developers are planning a high-rise project that would bring 251 affordable homes, affordable workspaces and an incorporated supermarket to the Alperton neighborhood of London's Brent borough, construction-oriented website pcbtoday.co.uk reports. Known as Minavil House, the 27-story tower would be the tallest building in Brent and would "make a significant contribution to addressing the capital's affordable housing crisis," the source said. The project will also include a café next to the adjacent Grand Union Canal. The “car-free” development sits across from the Alperton Underground Station and will include resident-owned units and rental apartments. Completion is expected in 2022.

STUDENT-HOUSING TOWER PART OF UNIVERSITY OF BRISTOL PLAN

A 21-story tower housing approximately 950 students is part of the University of Bristol's plan to redevelop seven acres on the dormant Temple Quarter site on Arena Island near Bristol Temple Meads Railway Station, the oldest and largest station in Bristol, England, itv News reports. Construction, which includes a trio of towers and teaching, research and innovation space for 800 staff members and 3,000 students, is slated to start in 2020. The university is gathering public feedback through May 1 and plans to welcome its first students to the site in 2022.

CTBUH RELEASES NEW TALL BUILDINGS BOOK

The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) recently released Tall Buildings + Urban Habitat: Volume 2 by Jason Gabel and Daniel Safarik. Following last year's first volume, it continues the themes of forging a more viable, sustainable urban habitat, with increased urban density playing an important role, and that tall buildings need to be seen as integrated pieces of urban infrastructure dedicated to improving cities' qualities of life with a cohesive, multidisciplinary response. CTBUH said that in this edition, "innovations in the constituent disciplines that bring tall buildings to life and even extend their lives — construction, the engineering of façades, fire and risk, geotechnical engineering, interior space, MEP, renovation, and structural engineering — are all explored.

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