News

Enjoy reading the most important industry news items happening within India and surrounding regions 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.  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 11/11/19

KONE OPENS NEW FACILITY IN CHENNAI

KONE Elevator India Pvt. Ltd. inaugurated a new manufacturing facility near Chennai, India, Business Standard reports. The INR4.5-billion (US$63.4-million) facility is the largest in the region at 50,000 m2. The factory is equipped with the latest technology to help KONE improve product quality and delivery time. The new plant, which will employ about 600 people, will mainly focus on the Indian market (the second-largest for the company, behind China), but will also export to neighboring countries such as Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

MUMBAI SENIORS GET RAILWAY ESCALATORS AFTER FIVE YEARS

Senior citizens in Mumbai are getting escalators installed at the Jogeshwari railway station after five years of asking, mid-day reports. Two foot overbridges at the station, which were higher than previous ones, will get escalators on the west side. Progress on the issue has been slow, because the area where the escalators will end belongs to Brihanmumbai Municipal Corp. (BMC). BMC approved the project back in July, but work was at a standstill because of monsoon season. Western Railways says work will soon begin on the escalators now that all hurdles have been cleared.

AL-FUTTAIM PROVIDING 46 UNITS TO DUBAI FESTIVAL PLAZA

Al-Futtaim Engineering and Technologies is providing 46 units — elevators, escalators and moving walks — to the 65,300-m2 Dubai Festival Plaza, scheduled to open in December, various news outlets, including MENAFN, report. Al-Futtaim's elevator division supplied more than 24 LM Liftmaterial machine-room-less elevators from Wittur with capacities of 2000-5000 kg, 14 Hitachi escalators and eight moving walks. Al-Futtaim Managing Director Murali S. observed Festival Plaza will cater to the growing number of residents and visitors in south Dubai. Convenient to some of the area's most established communities, including Dubai Marina and Palm Jumeirah, the mall is easily accessible from Sheik Zayed Road.

MIXED-USE HIGH RISE OPENS IN TOKYO'S SHIBUYA AREA

Shibuya Scramble Square, a 230-m, 46-story tower in Tokyo's Shibuya Station District Redevelopment, has officially opened, the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat reports, citing Japan Property Central. The mixed-use tower will house 213 retailers within the first 14 floors and two basements. Levels 17 through 45 will offer a total of 73,000 m2 of office space, the most of any building in the Shibuya region. There are observation decks on floors 14, 45 and 46, which offer views of Mount Fuji and other sights of Tokyo. Sibuya Scramble Square was designed by Nihon Sekkei, Kengo Kuma & Associates and SANAA Architects. Two other buildings, the 61-m Shibuya Scramble Square Center and the 76-m West Building, also part of the Shibuya Station District Redevelopment, are set to be completed in 2028.

DESIGN FOR NEW DISTRICT IN NANJING INCLUDES SUPERTALL

Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture revealed the design for a new mixed-use district in Nanjing, China, that includes a 500-m-tall supertall mixed-use tower, Architect reports. Scheduled for completion in 2025, South HeXi Yuzui Financial District and Tower also includes 100-, 155-, 220- and 350-m-tall office towers, and an 86-m-tall residential tower. The supertall design draws inspiration from the nearby Yangtze River with an exterior that reflects light, mitigates wind and optimizes views. Including an observation area providing 360˚ open-air views, it is being built to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Gold certification, with features such as multiple green spaces and rainwater harvesting.

MAN’S LEG “SWALLOWED” BY ESCALATOR IN KUALA LUMPUR

A man’s leg was “swallowed” by an escalator at a mall in Kuala Lumpur on November 3, World of Buzz reports. The incident, which took place along Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman, happened when a 49-year-old man’s flip-flop got caught near the landing of the escalator, pulling his leg in. The local Fire and Rescue Department says it took nearly an hour to free the man, who suffered a broken foot.

Week of 11/4/19

OTIS GOES DIGITAL TO IMPROVE CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE

Otis is transforming its business to become more digitally focused, Economic Times CIO reports. With the new focus, Otis hopes to improve customer and passenger experiences and reduce elevator maintenance and repair time. Otis India President Sebi Joseph says the company is working to create elevators smart enough to connect passengers, facility managers and the building systems with new apps such as Tune, which is being piloted in Pune and Delhi, India. A predictive-maintenance reporting app is also being developed. The company’s Internet of Things strategy also involves using data to predict elevator problems before they happen.

INTERLIFT SHOWS RESILIENT INDUSTRY

Event organizers AFAG Messen und Ausstellungen GmbH and VFA-Interlift e.V. have reported on another successful Interlift. The 2019 iteration, held October 15-18 in Augsburg, Germany, was exemplary of an industry “unimpressed by economic downturns,” they said. Despite a slow global economy, 577 exhibitors filled 45,500 m2 of space in the Messe Augsburg with 21,200 guests from 108 countries, making this the biggest Interlift yet. Many statistics were similar to the event’s last iteration in 2017. However, industry outlook was downgraded this year, from 34% expecting a sharp rise in 2017 to 23% in 2019. AFAG and VFA-Interlift added they will soon begin preparations for the next Interlift, slated for October 19-22, 2021.

OTIS INDIA RECEIVES INNOVATION, SUPPLY-CHAIN AWARDS

Otis Elevator India recently received awards for innovation and supply-chain excellence. On September 25, Sridar Rajagopal, director of sales and marketing, strategy and mergers and acquisitions, accepted the “IoT Innovation Award” from Express Computer at the Internet of Things (IoT) Innovation Conclave in Greater Noida, India. "With IoT services like Otis ONETM, the possibilities are immense and will offer a whole set of services not yet possible," he said. On the same day, Otis' Bengaluru factory was named second runner up in the “Excellence in Supply Chain — Large Enterprises” category at the Eighth Annual Manufacturing Today Conference & Awards 2019 in Mumbai. Fifty large manufacturers submitted nominations for the award, which recognizes operations efficiency and customer satisfaction.

Week of 10/28/19

9-YEAR-OLD GIRL DIES IN LIFT MISHAP IN HYDERABAD

A 9-year-old girl was pronounced dead at a local hospital as a result of a lift mishap in the building where she lived in the Hasthinapuram neighborhood of Hyderabad, India, on October 18, the Hindustan Times is among news outlets to report. When she was taking the elevator up to the third floor, another person called the elevator to that floor. The lift began moving with its outer grille open, and the girl's leg became stuck between the gap between the elevator and shaft. Her body was crushed. Medics and lift-maintenance staff attempted to free her for nearly 2 hr. A spokesperson for a child-rights association said "substandard elevators" are to blame for this and similar accidents.

CAIRO’S NEW HELIOPOLIS METRO STATION OPENS

The new Heliopolis station for the Cairo metro opened on October 20, Ahram Online reports. Construction on the EGP1.9-billion (US$118-million) station was fully funded by the country’s general treasury. Heliopolis, now the largest station in Egypt, the Middle East and Asia, has 17 escalators and four elevators throughout its 10,000 m2.

RESIDENTIAL, HOTEL DEVELOPMENT APPROVED FOR PARRAMATTA

Australian property tycoon Harry Triguboff recently won approval from the New South Wales Planning Panel for two towers, including what could become the tallest residential tower in Parramatta, Australia, the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat reports. The cost of the development, which includes a 66-level glass tower and a 58-level hotel, is recorded at AUD229 million (US$155 million), but estimates are higher, at about AUD320 million (US$217 million). The development will include space for retail and amenities, and yield 553 homes and 346 hotel rooms.

MAN INJURED AFTER FALLING INTO ESCALATOR ACCESS HOLE

A man in Harbin, Heilongjiang Province, China, was injured when he fell into an escalator access hole at a shopping mall, Shine reports. The man said there were no warning signs about the hole. He had a slight fracture, and his chest and leg were also injured in the incident. The mall reportedly paid part of the man’s medical expenses.

SYDNEY RAIL STATION EVACUATED DUE TO FAULTY ESCALATOR PART

The Town Hall railway station in Sydney had to be evacuated due to smoke coming from a faulty escalator part, news.com.au reports. The New South Wales Fire and Rescue Department responded to the station on October 14 to reports of smoke coming out of the escalator’s motor room. The station was briefly evacuated, while first responders addressed the overheating bearing. The escalator was taken out of service for repairs.

Week of 10/21/19

KONE EXPANDS ITEC WITH NEW INDIAN FACILITY

KONE inaugurated a technology and innovation center in the Sangamwadi area of Pune, India, that will serve as an extension to its India Technology and Engineering Center (ITEC) in Chennai, India, Construction Week Online reports. KONE was attracted to Pune due to its emergence as an educational hub that draws students and professionals from India and overseas to research institutes focusing on information technology, management and training. At the Pune center, KONE plans to start hiring engineers and eventually bring more than 120 new employees onboard. ITEC is where KONE remotely monitors its 24/7 connected elevators and escalators, and the Pune center promises to further strengthen ITEC's capabilities.

KONE TO SUPPLY 154 UNITS FOR METRO LINE IN NANNING, CHINA

KONE has won a contract to install 154 units for the first phase of Metro Line 4 in Nanning, China, the company recently announced. The 24.6-km-long line will have 19 underground stations, four of which will be connected to other metro lines. KONE will equip 10 stations with 29 MonoSpace® elevators and 125 TransitMaster™ 140 escalators. The contract includes five years of maintenance. The first phase of Line 4, being developed by Nanning Rail Transit Co., Ltd., is expected to be completed by the end of 2020 and, once open, will serve about 100,000 passengers per day.

SHIROKANE THE SKY COMPLEX UNDER CONSTRUCTION IN TOKYO

Three condominium towers in Tokyo are under construction, with sales set to start in mid-November, the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat reports. The east tower of the complex, called SHIROKANE The SKY, will rise 45 stories and 156 m above ground. It will yield 1,247 units and a penthouse valued at JPY500 million (US$4.7 million). The west tower will be a 19-story building, and a separate, low-rise building will also house a medical facility.