News

Enjoy reading the most important industry news items happening in the UK on a regular basis. The UK Lift / Elevator / Escalator Industry is unique in many ways and generates news that cannot easily be found on other media platforms. EWUK Magazine is the news forum for this specialist industry. News items are submitted by various sectors of the industry, including Lift Contractors, Lift Consultants, Architects, Property Managers, Building Owners, Equipment Suppliers and Government Bodies.

If you would like to submit your own news please email us at editorial@elevatorworld.com. You can also subscribe to our monthly newsletter, EWUK News (tick the box next to EWUK news). The newsletter 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.

September 24-October 7

DISTINCTIVE RESIDENTIAL SKYSCRAPER FOR GREATER MANCHESTER

A 55-story tower containing 545 apartments and commercial space is planned by Hong Kong developer One Heritage at the corner of Greengate and New Bridge streets in Salford, U.K., part of the greater Manchester area, the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat reports, citing Architect's Journal. Currently under review, the 51,811-m2 building would be the tallest in Salford. Incorporating public space such as a river walkway and facilities for residents including a library, gym and rooftop garden, One Heritage Tower could start taking shape on the site, which is currently a parking lot as early as late 2020. Upon the tower's planning application being submitted, OMI Architects Director Nick Berry said it is "fantastic" to see the development move forward with local residents' support.

CIBSE LIFTS GROUP ANNUAL SEMINAR COMING UP

The Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) Lifts Group is holding its annual seminar on November 12 at its headquarters at 222 Balham High Road, SW12 9BS in London. Speakers include Adam Scott, Phil Pearson, Gina Barney, Dave Cooper and Anna Peters. Their presentations will be based on those given at the recent Lift & Escalator Symposium, including such subjects as cycle lifts, vertical-transportation design for a large stadium, traffic simulators, escalator runaways, logging and analysis using an accelerometer and wooden machine frames. A GBP50 (US$61.60) fee is required, though apprentices and students get a 50% discount.

VANTAGE TO ACQUIRE TVC FROM DEWHURST UK

Vantage Elevator Solutions, a designer, manufacturer and distributor of elevator components and systems and a portfolio company of Golden Gate Capital of San Francisco, announced on September 24 an agreement to acquire Flint, U.K.-headquartered Thames Valley Controls (TVC) from Dewhurst UK plc. Established in 1971, TVC supplies elevator control and monitoring solutions to customers across the U.K. TVC has worked with Vantage on lift fixtures in North America and distributes some of its products in Australia. It will continue to be led by Managing Director Richard Young and retain its U.K. headquarters. "This acquisition provides us with a robust growth platform in the attractive U.K. market and deepens our product portfolio and development capabilities in controls and remote-monitoring products," Vantage President and CEO Ron Cauchi said.

BIRMINGHAM, U.K.’S TALLEST RESIDENTIAL TOWER NEARLY DONE

The Bank II, at more than 100 m tall the tallest residential building in Birmingham, U.K., was nearing completion in late August, Buy Association reports. The tower, which is scheduled for completion by the end of the year, contains 217 apartments within its 33 stories, the source said. A sister project to Bank I, which completed in summer 2018, Bank II offers a mix of studio and one-, two- and three-bedroom units. Building amenities include an on-site gym, shared open space, ground-floor restaurants and shops, and a concierge service. It is being developed by Regal Property Group.

PUBLIC TRANSIT ESCALATOR FATALITY PROBED IN LONDON

The September 18 death of a 44-year-old Cambridgeshire, U.K., man, who was working on an escalator at a rail station in London is being investigated, the Mirror is among news outlets to report. The man was apparently working on an escalator at London Waterloo station between the Jubilee and Northern/Bakerloo lines of the National Rail network. London Ambulance Service and London Fire Brigade responded to the early morning incident, but attempts to revive the man were unsuccessful, and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

ASCENSION COMPLETES DUBLIN ATRIUM BUILDING MOD

Dublin, Ireland-based Ascension Lifts Ltd. has completed a EUR750,000 (US$800,000) modernization of the elevators serving the former Microsoft Headquarters at the Atrium Building in Dublin, which the company calls one of the largest of its kind in the country. Work included transforming eight eight-stop, semipanoramic elevators from bottom-side-drive geared systems to fully top-drive machine-room-less systems using Ziehl-Abegg SM Gearless machines with NEWLift Controls' flexible FST2 LON Bus technology and Fermator PREMIUM Door Operators. These replaced the original 50/11 variable-frequency system. The project also included the installation of new controllers on two additional goods/passenger lifts. All work was completed within a tight timeframe of 26 weeks. A short case-study video on the project is available here.

FINAL DAY FOR EW PROJECT OF THE YEAR ENTRIES: OCTOBER 11

The deadline for submissions for the ELEVATOR WORLD Project of the Year Awards 2020 is October 11. The contest recognizes excellence in vertical, horizontal and inclined transportation. Winners in each of 11 categories will receive an award and be recognized in a feature story in the January 2020 issue. In addition to two new categories, “Elevators – Upgrades + Repairs” and “Escalators – Upgrades + Repairs,” entries can be made in “Elevators, New Construction”; “Elevators, Modernization”; “Escalators, New Construction”; “Escalators, Modernization”; “Moving Walks”; “Inclined Elevators”; “Platform Lifts & Stairway Chairlifts”; “Private-Residence Elevators”; and “Special-Purpose Lifts.” The contest is open for projects that have been completed within the past two years, and both text and photos must be submitted, along with a completed entry form, via electronic file sharing, or a mailed disc and/or flash drive. To download the form and obtain more information, visit website.

September 9-23

STRATFORD, U.K., REDEVELOPMENT MODIFIED

Architects’ Journal recently reported that PLP Architecture has reworked its plans for a co-living tower for developer The Collective in Stratford, East London. Former plans for a complex including a 30-story building on 0.64 ha on Stratford High Street have been changed to those for a 22-story, 287-room hotel with co-working space. Three existing buildings on the site will be demolished. The Collective has built a co-working/-living space in Old Oak Common in northwest London (also designed by PLP) and has a new second branch in Canary Wharf (designed by SOM). It is hoping the new plans for the site, which have been in limbo since 2015, will meet London Plan requirements and be approved. Requirements include providing an “affordable housing contribution and issues relating to inclusive design and transport,” the source said.

55-STORY TOWER WOULD BE AMONG TALLEST IN MANCHESTER AREA

Public consultations are underway for One Heritage Property Developments' plan for 55- and 16-story towers on New Bridge Street in Salford, part of Greater Manchester, U.K., The Business Desk reports. Called One Heritage, the property would offer one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments. If it's built, the 55-story structure would be among the tallest in Greater Manchester. "We have worked closely with Salford City Council to create a building that not only ties with Salford's aspirations for the area but will make a significant contribution to the skyline of this emerging quarter of the city," states Nick Berry of One Heritage architect OMI.

2020 EW MEDIA PLANNER AVAILABLE FOR ALL MAGAZINES

The 2020 edition of the ELEVATOR WORLD Media Planner is now available for download. It includes Editorial Calendars for EW, EW Europe, EW U.K., EW India and EW Middle East. Each consists of a schedule of the issue with submission deadlines, bonus distribution plans and specified content, such as Focus Topic and other special sections. The Media Planners include information for contacts, advertising rates and other details. The Editorial Calendar for EW is also available separately.

OTIS APPOINTS RAHUL GHAI CFO

Otis, in the process of separating from United Technologies Corp. as a standalone enterprise, has named Rahul Ghai as Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Yahoo Finance reports. In a company announcement, Otis called Ghai an accomplished CFO with proven experience and expertise across financial functions, including investor relations, accounting, financial planing and analysis, internal audit, taxes and treasury. It noted that Ghai has managed and negotiated mergers and acquisitions and has a solid background in contributing toward earnings growth in an S&P 500 company. In making the announcement, Otis President and CEO Judy Marks said Ghai "has outstanding public company leadership experience and brings to Otis a deep understanding of the needs and expectations of the investor community." Otis’ separation from United Technologies is to be finalized in the first half of 2020.

KONE HIRES LAW FIRM TO ADVISE ON POTENTIAL THYSSENKRUPP BID

KONE has hired one of Germany’s top corporate law firms, Hengeler Mueller,  to advise it on a possible takeover bid for thyssenkrupp’s elevator business, Reuters is among news outlets to report. KONE and Hengeler Mueller — which helped advise Tata Steel on its failed joint venture with thyssenkrupp — declined comment. The source says “the move underscores KONE’s strategic interest in the business,” for which thyssenkrupp formally sought buyers recently via letters to KONE, Schindler, Otis and Hitachi, as well as private-equity firms, Reuters says, observing on September 4 that responses to the letters were anticipated within two weeks and that thyssenkrupp is expected to sign a deal by the end of the year. thyssenkrupp is involved in steel, plant engineering and car parts, but its elevator segment is, by far, its most profitable. Since KONE CEO Henrik Ehrnrooth has described thyssenkrupp’s elevator business as a “perfect fit,” KONE is seen as the “most likely strategic bidder,” the source says.

August 27-September 8

THYSSENKRUPP FORMALLY SEEKS ELEVATOR DIVISION BUYERS

By sending out letters requesting expressions of interest, thyssenkrupp has formally started the process of courting potential buyers of all or parts of its elevator division, various news outlets, including Reuters, report. KONE, Schindler, Otis and Hitachi received letters, as did private equity firms KKR, Bain, Advent, CVC, EQT, Blackstone, Partners Group and Apollo, unnamed sources said. One source said thyssenkrupp, which is bleeding money from its other divisions including steel, plant engineering and car parts, seeks to keep a 25% stake in elevators, which is valued at up to EUR17 billion (US$19 billion) and is, by far, its most profitable division. Responses to the letters are anticipated within two weeks. thyssenkrupp, which is also preparing for an initial public offering, is expected to sign a deal by the end of the year.

SAFETY STOP-USE ORDER FOR SRLs

Honeywell Industrial Safety recently released a mandatory stop-use warning on potentially nonconforming brake components in certain models of Miller MightEvac and MightyLite Self-Retracting Lifelines (SRLs). The company noted that, while there have been no reported incidents due to this nonconformity, continued use of the product could result in serious injury or death. This document gives more details and affected model numbers. Honeywell added that no other Miller Fall Protection products are impacted and are safe to use.

PROJECT OF THE YEAR DEADLINE LESS THAN ONE MONTH AWAY

The deadline for submissions for the ELEVATOR WORLD Project of the Year Awards 2020 is September 30. The contest recognizes excellence in vertical, horizontal and inclined transportation. Winners in each of 11 categories will receive an award and be recognized in a feature story in the January 2020 issue. In addition to two new categories, “Elevators – Upgrades + Repairs” and “Escalators – Upgrades + Repairs,” entries can be made in “Elevators, New Construction”; “Elevators, Modernization”; “Escalators, New Construction”; “Escalators, Modernization”; “Moving Walks”; “Inclined Elevators”; “Platform Lifts & Stairway Chairlifts”; “Private-Residence Elevators”; and “Special-Purpose Lifts.” The contest is open for projects that have been completed within the past two years, and both text and photos must be submitted, along with a completed entry form, via electronic file sharing, or a mailed disc and/or flash drive. To download the form and obtain more information, visit website.