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.

July 2-15

WORK BEGINS ON QUEEN’S SQUARE IN LONDON

Work on the first phase of Queen’s Square’s regeneration has begun. The project, located in Croydon, London, U.K., sits on 5.5 acres and will include the redevelopment of Nestle Tower, St. George’s Walk and the Segas House, the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat reports. The first phase will consist of converting and expanding the two existing office towers, including the 25-story Nestle Tower, into multiple residential buildings, which will be up to 28 stories high and offer 288 new homes. The plan will also reportedly maintain the existing public access beneath the building to the St. George’s Walk shopping plaza. The second phase of the project will include redeveloping most of the site to provide a new town square, as well as commercial spaces, offices and more new homes.

GTBFT COMMITMENT SIGNED BY WORLDWIDE REPRESENTATIVES

The National Elevator Industry, Inc. (NEII) recently reported on the recommitment of the North American, European and Asia Pacific region elevator and escalator associations to achieve global technical barrier-free trade (GTBFT). The formal commitment to a common line of actions to achieve GTBFT is to promote and improve safety and to facilitate technological innovation and the free movement of goods worldwide. NEII joined the European Lift Association, European Elevator Association, China Elevator Association, Pacific Asia Lift and Escalator Association, European Federation for Elevator Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises, European Platform and Stairlift Association, European Lift Components Association, National Elevator & Escalator Association, Associacao Elevadores do Mercosul and (for the first time) the National Lift Union of Russia under the “World Elevator Federation” banner. “Worldwide acceptance of the International Organization for Standardization prescriptive standards is also part of the agreement that will lead to an efficient global approach for building transportation equipment that can be used by all manufacturers and installers,” NEII added.

MIXED-USE COMPLEX PROPOSED FOR BIRMINGHAM, U.K.

Hammerson, a U.K.-based property development firm, announced plans to transform Martineau Galleries in Birmingham City Centre, U.K. into a mixed-use neighborhood, World Construction Network reports. The proposed concept includes a 35-story building and 1.4 million ft2 of commercial space. The plan would offer 1,300 homes, in addition to a new hotel, restaurants and cafés. EPR Architects designed the plans for the 7.5-acre site. The project is expected to create 350 full-time jobs throughout the construction period. Construction is expected to begin in 2022.

June 18-July 1

LONDON MAYOR INTERVENES TO APPROVE HIGH-RISE HOTEL

London Mayor Sadiq Khan overturned the local council’s refusal to grant permission for a new hotel in Kensington, the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat reports. Khan approved SimpsonHaugh’s plan for the demolition of Kensington Forum, a 1970s building currently operating as a Holiday Inn, and new construction at the site of the Brutalist Richard Seifert-designed hotel. The new building will include 749 rooms, a spa, bars, restaurants, conference facilities and housing. After the mayor’s intervention, the tower will have 62 homes with “affordable” rent, as opposed to the original 42 that were planned. The existing building is the second-tallest in the borough, and residents argue the new plan would replace one out-of-place monstrosity with a bigger one.

FUTURE OF LONDON SITE IN LIMBO AFTER LATEST PROPOSAL TOSSED

The future of a 1.7-ha site near Earl's Court in West London remains uncertain after the latest proposal by John McAslan Architects was rejected by councilors, Architects' Journal reports. The firm proposed eight, up to 22-story buildings with 427 homes and amenities such as a gym and a swimming pool, but city leaders said the structures were "excessively tall" and would dominate their surroundings. Occupied by a car park, the property at 100 West Cromwell Road has what the source described as a "complex planning history" dating back more than 10 years. John McAslan is the fourth architect to draw up plans for it.

NETWORK RAIL WORKS TO IMPROVE ACCESSIBILITY INFORMATION

Network Rail, owner and manager of most of the railway network in Great Britain, is working to implement a competition-winning idea that would make accessibility information for passengers more available. The idea came from a rail industry initiative to provide a railway that is inclusive for everyone, called the Access for All programme. The plan is to provide passengers with better information about elevators and escalators at railway stations with a publicly accessible data feed. The feed would provide real-time status of elevators and escalators for train stations across Britain. Half of Network Rail’s escalators and elevators have remote monitoring systems that provide information about any issues, and this new plan intends to utilize that data in a way that will benefit passengers. To learn more, visit the website.

ELEVATOR WORLD BOOKSTORE RELAUNCHED

Elevator World, Inc. relaunched its bookstore, elevatorbooks.com, this week. Featuring many new and updated publications, the site is quicker and easier to navigate. Another feature is updated descriptions of books and authors, as well as a better experience on mobile devices.

June 4-17

KONE ANNOUNCES EXECUTIVE BOARD CHANGES

Maciej Kranz has been appointed chief technology officer, executive vice president (EVP) and executive board member at KONE. Kranz will succeed Tomio Pihkala, who has been appointed EVP, New Equipment. Pihkala will succeed Heikki Leppänen, who has been with KONE since 1982 and a member of the executive board since 2005. Kranz joins KONE from Cisco Systems Inc., where he served for 20 years, most recently as vice president and general manager, Corporate Strategic Innovation Group. KONE CEO Henrik Ehrnrooth observes that, in previous roles, Kranz "demonstrated strong leadership in turning digital opportunities into clear business benefits." Pihkala, meanwhile, "has a proven track record of leadership in several business lines in Europe and China, most recently leading our Technology and Innovations unit." Ehrnrooth thanked Leppänen for his contributions, including being instrumental in the launch of MonoSpace® in 1996. The changes become effective on July 1.

CTBUH REPORT “ROPELESS ELEVATOR SYSTEMS” NOW AVAILABLE

The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat’s (CTBUH) new research report, “Ropeless Elevator Systems: The Potential for Multidirectional Transportation in Tall Buildings,” is now available. Authored by Martina Belmonte, Dario Trabucco and Karl-Otto Schöllkopf, the 148-page, softcover publication “presents a broad scope of design possibilities enabled by ropeless and multidirectional elevators (such as thyssenkrupp's MULTI) with respect to how these technologies might influence the design, experience and navigability of tall buildings and urban habitats of the future.” Ordering information and pricing can be found at website.