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Technology Boom in Commercial Elevators

A lot of times, I talk about the technology of elevators – the invention of new ways to make elevator travel easier and more efficient for those who consistently use them. Primarily, I focus on home elevators that can be easily installed without any major construction, which is a feat in itself. These residential elevators are great for people who need more than a stairlift to get around their homes. However important these lifts are, commercial elevators are leading the way in technological advances.

Just last week I talked about the fastest elevator in the world, which (when it’s installed) will move at 1,080 meters per second. This is an amazing feat in the world of skyscraper elevators and will most likely change the way the world travels up and down office buildings in the future. This week, I discovered another new progression in elevator tech – digital touchscreens. According to Dallas Business Journal, The Berkshire at Preston Center in Dallas, Texas, will be only the second building in the US to install such devices:

“The elevator renovation project is scheduled to begin in December. The first elevator will be finished by the end of January, with an estimated completion of April 2013. The touch screen technology by Janus will allow tenants to view daily news, weather and stock reports, as well as view digital bulletin boards. Fujitec Elevator will install the elevators in the building.”

The project will not be cheap though, costing more than a million dollars to place inside of eight elevators inside the building. This is chump change for a building estimated to be worth over $30 million:

“The project is part of an overall elevator upgrade to The Berkshire, said Kathy Czorniak, senior property manager at Transwestern, the management company of the building. ‘This is a major capital improvement project, especially now when the market is down,’ Czorniak said. ‘It gets very competitive to win tenants over, and elevators are a major component of any property.’”

I think a good portion of the installation budget will be made back in time, especially with the ability to sell advertising and exclusive broadcast rights on these touchscreens. Do you think that elevator touchscreens are a good idea?

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