We take elevators for granted, just like other necessary but unglamorous technologies in our daily lives. But when elevators don’t work properly, we are rapidly irritated, much like when the internet or the hot water in your home isn’t working.
You probably won’t get much credit for smart elevator design because elevators are frequently the unsung heroes of a structure. However, it’s crucial to approach the design phase carefully so that every component of the building functions like a well-oiled machine.
Why is it difficult to create an elevator plan?
Simply said, since elevator design calls for meticulous attention to detail. Depending on the size and kind of the building, a different elevator design is required. There are several options to consider. Patients and employees could require separate elevators in a hospital. To keep traffic flowing smoothly in tall buildings, elevators must be quick and spacious. On cruise ships, elevators must be able to endure the rolling and pitching of the ship brought on by inclement weather. And so it goes; the elevator faces difficulties in every building.
What are the advantages of doing it correctly?
A well-designed elevator system makes a building operate effectively and safely. Elevators that are well-designed also enhance the ambience of a room. This implies that using the elevators and traveling around the building are smooth for passengers.
If elevator design is not handled properly from the beginning, it could cause expensive delays later on. The worst-case scenario is when a subpar design progresses from planning to building to operation. Passengers may suffer because of this. Too few, too small, or simply unsightly elevators all detract from the user experience.
Project hiccups are common, but by paying attention to these pointers, you can steer clear of serious setbacks and put yourself on the right track.
Tip #1: Get going early
It is not possible to design an elevator system at the last minute. Elevator design influences building design, and vice versa.
It’s crucial to keep in mind that the complete procedure, from design completion to installation, can take a while. Furthermore, there is always a potential that your client will alter their mind about a certain aspect of the design. If you get started early, you’ll have plenty of time to make changes with little stress.
Tip #2: Know how the structure is used.
A detailed understanding of a building’s intended usage is the foundation for good elevator design. This entails carefully reading the brief and having in-depth discussions with your customer. They may not be aware of all the variables that affect elevators or all the choices that must be made. It is your responsibility to uncover the truth and prevent unpleasant surprises.
To appropriately assess the needed lift performance (including handling capacity and waiting time), traffic analysis entails simulating projected passenger movement. Important elements that must be taken into account:
- How often are the elevators used?
- What times are the busiest?
- Exist crowded places like restaurants and gyms?
- Are there any heavy items that need to be moved about the building?
- Do you require a lift specifically for firefighters?
- Does the elevator have to provide service to parking floors?
- Should someone with a limited range of motion use the elevators?
Third tip: Don’t forget about the roof and the foundations.
Elevator shaft specifications, such as pit size and headroom, are influenced by travel speed. Planning for the foundation must take this knowledge into account. Will the top level at the opposite end of the building have a machine room above it? Building height and roof design are impacted by this.
You must ascertain the elevator dimensions as soon as possible in order to develop drawings and obtain precise cost estimates. It’s critical to delay starting construction until you are certain of the required elevators’ exact dimensions. If you do, it may significantly restrict your options in the future. Consider how quickly your elevators must operate to appropriately serve the building. The maximum allowable duration for an elevator to travel from the bottom to the top of a building is typically 20 to 45 seconds (excluding any stops and travelling at full speed).
#4. Take into account aesthetics
Many customers give elevator interior design absolutely no thought. You might be given the task. The design of an elevator should complement the elevator’s intended usage, its users, and the building’s general design.
In addition to being a useful device, elevators also add to the aesthetic appeal of a building. Select finishes that are appropriate for the building’s anticipated circulation. Where do I begin? You can choose from a variety of materials for elevator wall panels and floors, including stainless steel, laminate, glass, vinyl, carpet, and stone. The options are virtually endless for custom finishes. Other factors to take into account include if the finishes need to be simple to clean and whether the floor needs to be non-slip for carts and other items.
Lighting is also another crucial element. If you do it well, you can improve the design while reducing energy use. Mirrors are another thing to think about because they can improve passenger safety and comfort. To securely exit an elevator using a wheelchair, for instance.
Keep up with regulations (tip #5)
Both commercial and residential elevators must adhere to regional norms, much like the building itself. The number of rules and safety codes is staggering, and they are constantly being changed. They differ not only between nations but also between cities and regions within the same nation.
Additionally, there are global norms. These include guidelines for size restrictions, the bare minimum of elevators, power consumption, accessibility, and inspection needs.
You might become familiar with the laws in a given locality if you frequently develop elevator systems for that area. If not, you must seek guidance.
How to appear knowledgeable about elevators
Elevator design has always been a distinctive and difficult aspect of construction, but how it’s done is evolving. The traditional method involved reading through thick books of lift spare parts specs and soliciting assistance from more seasoned coworkers. There is now a quicker, simpler method.
Elevator design is simplified by the Schindler Plan & Design tool, an online program. It’s easy to use, doesn’t require any prior product knowledge, and covers aspects of elevator design you might not have even thought about.
Plan and design your elevators, then obtain the technical drawings, 3D BIM models, and specs. You can immediately contact a consultant online if you have any questions. The simple method to appear to be an elevator design expert, even if you’re not, is to use Schindler Plan & Design.