This month we are focusing on modular elevators inside the building. Believe it or not one of the most common questions we face is can the MEM Elevator System be placed inside a building?
When the product was developed as a response to the Americans with Disabilities Act in the 1980’s the concept was to provide a vertical transportation solution as fast as possible. To that end, it seemed logical (and probably was) to just set the elevator next to the building. Then just cut the holes for the elevator doors and just like that a fully installed elevator in no time. The concept worked and worked well and became synonymous with exterior placement. However after seeing the success, quality and speed people started asking for modular elevators inside the building in new and retrofit projects.
Also, the confusion is partially my fault. I have been the sole marketer for the modular elevator industry for quite sometime. So, I would be remiss if I did not take blame. But I have a good reason…it just made better visual sense to tell the modular elevator story where you could plainly see the hoistway standing along side the building. My bad.
So to make up for my shortcomings below are a few projects inside buildings.
You will notice they can be in the middle of a large room or seamlessly built into a wall. It does not matter. They still go in the same way.
Usually, early in the project once the foundation is poured and the pit is completed the elevator is craned into place. The building is then constructed around the fully installed modular elevator. To make things even easier the MEM Elevator System comes with a fully drywalled hoistway inside and out.
In the video below you can see how fast and easy it is to place an elevator and build around it. Check out the elevator being placed at about 20 seconds in. The second elevator (that was also used as a construction elevator) is placed at the 59 second mark.
When it comes to retrofit projects, when the building is ready to receive the elevator a hole is cut in the ceiling and at each floor. The elevator is then slipped in with no problems.
So regardless of your project, if you are needing a midrise elevator we are your solution. Modular elevators inside, outside, new or retrofit we are your solution.
For nearly twenty years Modular Elevator Manufacturing has been leading the elevator revolution. Like any revolution there are milestones or measurements that show the growth of that movement. Markers that point to the “normalization” or general acceptance of a movement. These include: a global awareness of the product and methodology, an overall increase in market acceptance, implemented examples of the concept in completed projects, general acceptance and understanding of the advantages, and ultimately expansion of the market. Now, MEM is pleased to say, “Next stop transformation”.
Those milestones are being realized. Now the focus is shifting from the necessity of revolution to the reality of transformation in the elevator industry itself.
When the concept of the modular elevator was first conceived, it was as a response to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Three individuals put together the original plans and started producing modular elevator units. Their concept was largely designed to sit beside an existing structure to easily and quickly make an old building compliant and more accessible. Great idea!
Many of those early units were sold and installed. But a modular delivery approach requires an understanding of construction and elevators. Ultimately, an overall lack of experience in the construction industry led to many difficulties in the installation process along with other issues. However, suggestions from the field for improvements often fell on deaf ears and so the concept, although sound, struggled to take off.
Enter TLShield. As the fledgling modular elevator company fell to failure, Tom Shield, who had installed many of the early units, took a bold step. His company, TL Shield and Associates began a new entity Modular Elevator Manufacturing (MEM) dedicated solely to the improvement and production of modular elevators. They instituted many product changes to improve the overall quality and installation process. The MEM Elevator System was born and they began producing the solution that many were looking for.
Since that time a steady march towards revolutionizing the old, tired model of conventional elevators began. Few realize the elevator industry had largely remained stuck in the mid-1800’s in the way an elevator was installed and produced. Since before the Civil War hoistways were built in a building and then the elevator was painstakingly assembled in the shaft. Crates of parts would arrive to be assembled in a closed, challenging space. That is still the way it is done in the conventional elevator sector. In an honest moment, the entire industry would agree, that makes no sense at all. Modular elevators changed all of that. They are produced in a factory, hoistway and all, shipped to the location and then the fully install elevator is lowered into place in a couple hours.
Since the beginning MEM realized that the product was revolutionary, but the revolution could easily die if a proactive approach to enlightening the construction industry failed. So education and information became the model to market the concept and high-quality product. “Next stop transformation” would take time, patience and effort but worth it. Change in any monopolistic industry is a slow steady undertaking and does not happen overnight.
To propel that change forward, the new model became education in place of the expected sales pitch. Older iterations of the MEM website contained a voluminous amount of data, facts and specifications. It even offered up links to drawings and engineering information. Previously many considered that kind of information proprietary to their brand and did not have plans on line. However, we found transparency was the best option in how we arrived at our improvements, created awareness and helped to answer questions.
This includes passing knowledge freely to other elevator companies. Sharing and opening our facility became a routine practice and is still in practice today. When Covid hit, we offered for the first time a one of a kind virtual tour of our factory to anyone that asks. That openness and outreach remains the only online virtual tour of an elevator production facility in the world. No one opens their doors as we do. We know allowing openness and full disclosure is the only way to make our “next stop transformation” a reality.
If you want to take advantage of our live virtual tour you can do so. Just click the button.
Early on schools in California embraced the modular concept and the idea that a modular elevator would be the best and most logical choice for ADA compliance. As the sole leader in the industry we were often specced into those projects. However, I remember the day that a modular elevator was specced into a project that was not in the education sector. Obviously the day passed with no fanfare or popping corks, but I knew things had changed.
Product acceptance on a whole new level had just occurred. That was followed quickly by approved architect training through AIA, integration into new building projects not just retrofits and design/build plans being altered. This was all to incorporate our modular units into ever-widening applications regardless of the type of construction method.
We also found that big players in the construction industry were more than just curious, they were serious. They saw that a fully installed elevator set in place before lunch break was a big deal. The realization and reality of an elevator off the critical path had enormous implications. The potential of that removal from the critical path changes everything. It reduces call backs of other trades and the entire timeline and costs. Suddenly, the light bulb clicked on…there was a better way.
Acceptance of the product was also demonstrated by increases in our Fast Track quotes, formal quotes and ultimately sales. In just two short years we had to double our manufacturing floor and we are currently at all-time sales heights requiring us to look at an additional expansion or space. We now ship nationwide routinely with projects as far away as New York. All of this success was due in part to our commitment to modeling of the concept in how it works and the advantages.
Commonsense it seems has disappeared in some ways from our society. The hardest way of doing things has replaced ease and wisdom as in the construction industry’s use of conventional elevator companies. Unfortunately, their sales concepts is not one of openness and sharing. Instead we learned through our polling efforts they were sometimes sowing seeds of confusion an exclusion. There was just one way…their way.
One of the respondents to our poll said it best, “It’s unfortunate knowing when entering into a project where elevators are to be installed that there will be issues and complicated schedule situations. The elevator company knows there are not many alternatives for installation so they capitalize in the safety of us needing them more than they need us.”
We have become that alternative and change so needed. As our mission is not just to offer concepts, but actual projects that clearly demonstrate higher quality can accompany speed through manufacturing.
Most importantly we stress we need each other in the building process. We know that if you just say something is better, faster, easier greener, and more cost effective it would come off looking false no matter what the intentions. Listening and conversation is our mandate.
As a result we developed cohorts for each vertical construction segment. And we developed a short poll to enable us to hear what is wrong with our industry anonymously. We do not horde the results but in an unprecedented move provide the data openly to everyone that wants to see it.
Help us improve the elevator industry by taking our short poll. It will help us shed some light on industry improvements. It is anonymous and just five short questions.
We feel the product makes the most sense and with sincerity we share what we know and have learned.
It is a huge difference as we recognize that we have succeeded where the previous company failed by listening, understanding the elevator industry intimately and making needed change. Intuitively we knew immediate improvements that would make everything better in the engineering, design and installation. Honestly some were what we would call no-brainers, plain to see from the decades of elevator experience we brought to the table.
However, it is easy to be blinded by past success. So we continue to innovate, expand our knowledge and to assess our projects from the perspective of architects, project engineers, construction managers and owners. The communication is crucial to continued success.
It is important to know that this does not mean every idea is a good idea. We methodically look at new ideas against what has worked. We think deeply and don’t jump to quick conclusions. This has led to an ever improving product line that exceeds expectations.
As our market share continues to grow we know our ideas and concepts will be and have been copied. Sometimes they are just pretenders that think anyone can produce an elevator. They struggle with quality and often seem to grope in the dark with innovation. But, when you are driving towards the “next stop transformation” philosophy ultimately the next stop includes others in the business. When you are successful at what you do people will follow.
The result is two new reputable entrants into the modular elevator industry. They have seen growth and want to be a part of the revolution. It may surprise you but, we have no qualms with that as long as they copy our quality as well. As a pioneer in the modular elevator business we are glad to have help building on what we have done.
Resolute Elevator in North Carolina has stepped up to manufacturing modular elevators in a big way and they are seeing great growth. Their background is similar to ours. They were in the elevator business for several years and even installed some modular elevators. Likewise, they were concerned for the elevator riding pubic and the concept itself when they found the modular offerings they used less than the quality they and their customers demanded. At Resolute they felt innovation was lacking and poor workmanship was the order of the day. They understand that if modular elevators become equated with substandard quality then the better concept of a manufactured elevators would struggle. They have even participated in one of our cohort groups. Their input was invaluable.
Big congrats to them and best wishes!
But a second entrant into the modular elevator industry is more curious. Thyssenkrupp (commonly called TKE), having witnessed the wisdom and potential market share of modular, has decided to stick their decidedly big toe into the elevator revolution we began so long ago. As we all know big companies move slow and ponderously and big elevator is no acceptation. After all we have been grabbing more and more of the elevator market for over a decade and our innovations have now become a staple in many construction segments.
Why does TKE embrace change now? One can only speculate. However as we know in the “next stop transformation” theory, new entrants will come from a number of sources. We are just satisfied that they, although late to the party, see that modular is viable and the future. They are just now testing their new modular system in Hong Kong, but they will eventually make it to our shores. This is not just vindication, but product justification. Now they see it and soon everyone in the construction industry will as well.
Overall this is proof positive that what we are doing is winning the revolution.
Next stop…transformation and we have been leaders in that effort longer than anyone else.
If you are interested in being a part of the elevator revolution, we encourage you to dig, explore and ask plenty of questions. We are ready and willing to be a part of your period of discovery. To get started we offer a couple opportunities below. Just click a button.
A modular project always benefits from using modular elevators. The primary reason is that the resources and knowledge are already in place and everyone understands how the modular concept works. There is comfort in understanding the modular concept.
But the benefits go beyond just mere comfort. It fulfills a need to increase speed, time and savings. Also, the MEM System does not interrupt the benefit of a modular design. In a recent Los Angeles area modular project. Studio One-Eleven designed three supportive housing buildings all based around the modular concept, so using a modular elevator was an easy choice. The advanced modular design of the project and MEM allowed the Vanowen Apartments, by use of the modular concept, reduce costs 30-35% below conventional construction. That meant a more efficient use and speedier occupancy for the chronically homeless of Los Angeles.
“Modular designs we are perfecting with our partners significantly reduce cost and construction time,” said Michael Bohn, Studio One-Eleven Senior Principal, AIA. “We may have provided the model to build it faster, cheaper and better for the affordable housing sector which could help alleviate Los Angeles’ housing crisis.” Modular Elevator Manufacturing was proud to be a part of the project.
The MEM Elevator System went in smoothly as part of the modular project package and impressed those on the project.
The benefits realized are due to an understanding of the modular concept as a whole. The pit needs to be perfect so there is a seamless match to the rest of the structure. We provide an easy to use template that assures ease of installation. With that in place the elevator easily slips in.
Once the pit is complete the fully installed elevator goes in before lunch. Then when electric available onsite, the crew returns to start up the elevator. The process is so fast that the modular elevator can be used as a construction elevator saving money on the project.
If you have a project in mind and want to speak directly to one of our representatives fill out the Fast Track form. We can provide you a thumbnail number in hours.
Lastly, this type of project takes a team. So, we would like to mention our partners in this project. Our good friends at Howard Construction were professional as usual. Their team did a great job! Award winning Studio One-Eleven provided a unique design based on the modular concept. Also, TLShield placed and started up the MEM Elevator System.
Shark Bite and Modular Elevators – Newhart Middle School/Mission Viejo, CA. Innovation can be hard to accept and try. In Mission Viejo however, they are embracing innovation and teaching it in a brand new facility at Newhart Middle School.
At the recent open house Superintendent Kirsten Vital Brulte said, “We look forward to seeing how they use this innovative space to further their STEAM education.” There is no doubt the facility will be put to good use, but there could be a bigger lesson about innovation and acceptance of technology that we all could learn.
This lesson of trying innovation struck a cord with me during a recent home renovation. We added on to our modest farmhouse a kitchen and upstairs bath. Of course to keep the costs under control, my wife and I decided to do some of the work ourselves. I am not totally without skills. The result is we took over some of the obvious stuff that we knew we could do. Painting, trimming out windows and doors and baseboards.
I also considered making the plumbing a DIY project. It was just a sink and dishwasher in the kitchen. Pretty straight forward. However, I was worried as it had been sometime since I sweated pipes. I then looked into Shark Bite plumbing and my suspicious mind started racing. It looked easy…too easy. If I used the snap together plumbing, I would definitely be able to avoid the difficulties of copper, but at what cost? Was this truly going to snap together so easily and hold?
I would have definitely saved a ton of money, been able to put the plumbing in faster and complete the job on my schedule, meaning the kitchen would be ready sooner. You can only eat take-out off of paper plates for so long.
Ultimately, however, I wasn’t convinced. I just couldn’t do the job with this new fangled product.
We got a great reference for a plumber and so after he saw the plans and agreed, I wrote a check and scheduled the job. Weeks went by but in his own sweet time he arrived. However, as he clambered out of his van, what did I see? Rolls of PEX tubing. Also, all his shelves were filled with connectors and fittings for snap together plumbing. He said that for jobs like mine, that was what everyone is using. It was easy and quality.
I watched agog as he went to work. It was as he promised and I had been a fool. I could have saved money, time and effort by doing it on my own with a more advanced product. Before lunch, he was out the door telling me to call if there were any problems and let him know when everything else was done so he could set the fixtures.
I guess you sometimes just have to live to learn.
I immediately saw parallels between Newhart Middle School, Shark Bite and Modular Elevator Manufacturing. The MEM Elevator System and snap together plumbing have been on the market for over twenty years. Both are innovative and have revolutionized their industries. They are proven to reduce time, reduce costs and are just as good as what they have replaced. High-quality is a must for a commercial elevator.
Lastly in my case regarding plumbing anyway, both struggle with acceptance. Shark Bite and modular elevators have a hurdle to clear. They must convince the market by seeing them in action and by being open and honest about what is offered and the differences between the revolutionary and conventional.
So we are working hard to provide examples of our product, like Newhart Middle School pictured. What you are seeing is a fully installed elevator being placed through a hole that was left in the build. It was set in just a couple hours and was started up in a couple of days. Revolutionary!
As you can see, the project looks great. It went in faster for the school with no disruption to classes and overall their embracing of innovation in what they teach and how they teach it, will be a lesson for all.
If you would like to see about this project or others like it, we are opening up our factory to live, virtual tours at your convenience. All you have to do is click the button and fill out a simple form. We will then schedule the tour at your convenience. During the tour we will answer any and all questions. You can also schedule an in person visit as well.
Lastly, if you have a project in mind and want to speak directly to one of our representatives fill out the Fast Track form. We can provide you a thumbnail number in hours.
For more great photos of the project, visit our good friends at Miller Construction. Their team did a great job!
Hope On Avalon/Los Angeles, CA – When it comes choosing the elevator type for any job, Modular Elevator Manufacturing will help. We are not a one size fits all elevator company, trying to shoehorn projects into a singular kind of elevator. Also our vast experience and knowledge helps guide during the project in making the best choices.
That’s the case at our current elevator jobsite at the Hope On Avalon project in Los Angeles. On that project we partnered with Ed Grush – project general contractor, KTGY – project architect, Silver Creek Industries – modular supplier and Danny Moizel at HGB Modular – consultant. Working with that group is like working with the dream team of construction and all were a joy to work with. They are each knowledgeable, experienced, have well run organizations and are leaders in the construction industry and modular industry as well.
They came to us needing a 5-story elevator for a transitional and supportive housing project. The solution was a stackable hoistway and an in-ground hydraulic jack. Setting the fully installed elevator was complete in just a couple hours. We were glad to be a part of the project.
Using an in-ground jack was the best solution for the project. It has a fast, smooth ride that will serve the purposes well. The cab is made of tough Galvaneal steel with vandal resistant hall calls and buttons. It will handle the rigors of service for decades. We do not use wood core or particle board with the MEM Elevator System. Galvaneal reduced mold issues, chipping, breaking and warping that can occur with wood core cabs.
As you can see in the video, the hoistway is built with tough 4X4 inch steel meeting all requirements. All the elevator components are installed and then it is wrapped in drywall ready for cladding. The elevator and jack arrive on a truck and then the in-ground jack is simply lowered into the pre-drilled hole. The elevator bottom section is placed on top. Then, the upper section is lowered in the same way and connected. The right elevator for the right job. Fast and ready for electric and start up.
The mission of this project is important. The elevator and the Hope on Avalon project are crucial to combat the growing homelessness issues in Los Angeles. There are several benefits for supportive housing with the MEM system:
In conclusion, it maybe time to explore the possibilities further regarding supportive housing elevators. Let’s see if the MEM Elevator System can meet your needs. We would love to be a part of recommending an elevator type that suits your project best. You can click the button below for a Fast Track Quote for a project you currently are working on. However, if you want to explore it more, request a LIVE VIRTUAL TOUR. We would be happy to pull back the curtain. We will show you how we produce the industry’s most successful modular elevator solution.
You can join in and discuss all things modular elevator with myself and offsite construction leader Audree Grubesic from Offsite Dirt on May 31st. If you have questions about Modular Elevators, this is a great place to start. So sign up today! I will be answering questions and discussing how Modular Elevator Manufacturing and the MEM Elevator System is the absolute best solution for any low or mid-rise building project.
We are more than happy to participate with Offsite Dirt in their Offsite Construction Series. It is an online, forum where industry leaders are asked questions about the solutions they offer, what the future holds and the impact they are having in the offsite industry.
We specialize in low and mid-rise modular vertical transportation. And the MEM Elevator System can work for on or offsite projects. So if you have any questions at all, join us by signing up. Looking forward to the questions and seeing you there.
Offsite Dirt is a media leader when it comes to the modular industry. They showcase current news, techniques, technology, influencers, and conversations in offsite construction. In other words they are all things modular.
Offsite Dirt has a two-pronged mission: to inform the construction industry and the general public on the intricacies of what’s currently happening in the fast-growing offsite construction field, and to provide a meeting place for offsite construction professionals where information, opinions and resources can be freely exchanged.
If you have a project and need some questions answered but not able to attend, click the buttons below. We can schedule an informational live virtual tour of our facility. If you have a project in mind, we can answer your questions and give you thumbnail numbers in a day or less.
Hope On Hyde Park/Los Angeles, CA – MEM Experience paved the way for participation in this worthwhile project. When looking at elevator options, several considerations were made, but the experience of MEM (Modular Elevator Manufacturing) and TL Shield & Associates as the onsite elevator team paved the way for this exceptional project. MEM is proud to be a part of this project with C. W. Driver and they are grateful for what we bring to the table. “We appreciate MEM’s experience in the elevator industry. They helped keep the project moving forward and on time.” – John Kately, Project Executive, C.W. Driver.
Why are we so proud? Hope On Hyde Park is a big deal as a modular project but also due to the building’s mission. The project uses locally fabricated modular building units, including a state of the art, easy installing MEM Elevator System. This will create a modern and affordable transitional housing community for the Los Angeles homeless population.
The five-story development will offer studios and one-bedroom apartments on a 0.49-acre site. Residential services and a boxing gym will be located on the ground floor. The 98-unit building will be constructed around a central courtyard, providing privacy, safety, and a deepened sense of community. Parking spaces will be provided for social services staff while each resident will have a bike storage space. Floor to ceiling glazing along the amenity space will engage the community and brings movement to the street.
The elevator for the five-story project, as you can see in the video above, was set in no time. Quite impressive even for veteran project managers. “Seeing a fully installed elevator lowered into place and set in four hours was amazing.” – Luis Cadiz, Project Manager, C.W. Driver.
The process begins with placing the mode of conveyance, an in-ground hydraulic jack. It goes in first. Then the lower a portion of the fully installed elevator and hoistway gets craned into place. Once it is set, the second section of the elevator is lowered as well and locked in. The elevator came in two sections due to transportation needs and is not unusual in the least. The units are designed to be stackable.
The entire elevator set took less than four hours and everything is already inside including the elevator car and wiring. Once power is available onsite the MEM Elevator System is ready to go. It will then be started up, adjusted and scheduled for inspection. An easy, fast, timesaving solution. The elevator is off the critical path and the all too important purpose of the building can begin changing lives sooner than if a traditional elevator was used.
TL Shield & Associates set the elevator and will be in charge of start up as well. They and Modular Elevator Manufacturing was chosen due to the expertise they provide and the superior product they offer. They have been the leaders in the modular elevator field for more than two decades.
Tough steel makes up the MEM Elevator System hoistway with production occurring in a factory environment. Installation of all the elevator components and parts then takes place. Loading and shipping occurs next when the site is ready. In four hours you will have a fully installed, commercial quality elevator ready to be started up and used.
The mission of this project is important. The elevator and the Hope on Hyde Park project are crucial to combat the growing homelessness issues in Los Angeles. There are several benefits for supportive housing with the MEM system:
In conclusion, it maybe time to explore the possibilities further regarding supportive housing elevators. Let’s see if the MEM Elevator System can meet your needs. You can click the button below for a Fast Track Quote for a project you currently are working on. However, if you want to explore it more, request a LIVE VIRTUAL TOUR. We would be happy to pull back the curtain. We will show you how we produce the industry’s most successful modular elevator solution.
There are distinct advantages to the use of modular elevators for parking structures. This is especially true when adding the MEM Elevator System to you next project. Conversely, adding a conventional elevator to a new or existing parking facility can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. Beyond that the process can take months. The MEM Elevator System is an architectural solution, which effectively deals with these issues, saving you time and money. Those are distinct advantages of the modular elevator and set us apart from other alternatives.
The MEM Elevator System, is a prefabricated the hoistway which is manufactured off-site in a remote location. This allows the modular elevator to be manufactured in the plant simultaneously to the construction of the parking structure.
Unlike conventional elevators, modular elevators don’t need to be an inherent part of the parking structure they are servicing. Instead, they are easily attached to the existing structure. This often is on the exterior of the building without having to share the same foundation.
For an existing parking structure that is adding floors and needs a vertical transportation system, a modular elevator is the ideal solution. It extends the life of the parking facility when adding a modular elevator. You will lose no square footage – all while ensuring accessibility for everyone.
Also, placing the modular elevator on-site before the parking facility is fully built is possible. It can even can be used as the construction elevator – as long as power is available.
See, regulators typically require a temporary construction lift for projects over three stories. The alternative is an elevator to be installed at a job site. A permanent modular elevator can be used to meet these requirements. It then eliminates the need to rent and expense a temporary lift. That in itself demonstrates distinct advantages of the modular elevator.
Additionally, modular construction offers shorter build times; typically 50 to 60 percent less than a traditional on-site construction project. A modular elevator can be up and running before a conventional hoistway is built. This provides an earlier return on investment and lower professional fees.
The two most common vertical transportation solutions used in parking facilities are hydraulic and traction machine roomless (MRL) elevators. Both are available full-sized for commercial use and both are equal in performance and quality.
Hydraulic has the advantage of being easier to install and maintain. This makes them a less expensive choice in the long run. As a result hydro elevators are the recommendation we most often make. They are in use in parking structures between two-to-five stories and are available with holeless-twin or in-ground jacks. Holeless hydraulic elevators use above-ground cylinders and are used in sustainable or cost-sensitive projects with two to three floors. With the holeless elevators you can eliminate the unknowns related to drilling for in-ground jacks.
The in-ground hydraulic system can easily accommodate five stories or even higher. It provides a smooth ride and lower maintenance costs overall.
The traction MRL is an option, that offers little more than the hydraulic units. It is marginally faster (literally seconds) and can achieve higher total travel. However, the additional speed comes with a cost of higher maintenance fees.
It is important for the contractor to work closely with the modular elevator manufacturer. They should be involved when planning and installing a modular elevator for a successful installation. Logistics and timing play an important role in maximizing the financial opportunities that modular elevators afford. The MEM team offers support, coordination and communication in the process.
The first step in the installation process is pouring the concrete elevator pit. The anchor bolt template from MEM is useful for precise positioning. Second, once the elevator is set in place, it is attached to the anchor bolts and verified to be plumb. You now have a fully installed elevator.
Next, the fully-assembled modular equipment room is set into place. This installation process is usually completed by lunch time. No kidding.
After the elevator is set, electrical, fire and phone services are provided and final adjustments are completed. Upon inspection and approval by the appropriate jurisdictions, the elevator is ready for use in a matter of days.
As you can see modular elevators offer many benefits over conventional elevators. For all low and mid-rise applications in new and retrofit construction we are the preferred solution.
Lastly, we can customize the ready-to-use MEM Elevator System. In that way we can meet the needs of any project. And the end results are indistinguishable from conventional construction. They are also available with vandal resistant features because we all know a parking garage elevator needs to be tough. One thing for sure there are distinct advantages of the modular elevator for the parking industry.
We hope we have laid out a good argument for the advantages of the modular elevator for parking structures. So if you have any interest contact us at any time. We will help you think though potential uses. If you have a project in mind, click the Fast Track button below. You will be provided a thumbnail number and receive additional information. If you would like to see how we create the elevator, you can register for a Live Virtual Tour. Or come visit our factory in person. We would love to show off a bit.
The most difficult environment for an elevator is a parking garage making one tough elevator essential. Exposure to the elements as well as being way from the main building or in a remote location is often problematic.
Even with surveillance systems some feel there are no prying eyes watching them come and go. Also, the riders are usually not limited to a specific known clientele like in other elevator settings. Most anyone can pick up a ticket to park and go in or even just wander in off the street. Depending on the time of day the elevator can be left isolated and vulnerable. All of this makes for difficult operating conditions including heat and cold, wind and rain as well as an opportunity for vandalism.
The result is a parking garage becomes a true test for elevator durability. Much like the old Timex commercials from the 50’s and 60’s. John Cameron Swayze in his smooth voice would say, “Let’s see what happens when…” And then they would strap a watch to Rocky Marciano’s wrist or Mickey Mantles bat. After taking the pounding it would work like new and Swayze would proclaim it “Takes a licking and keep on ticking.” You need an elevator that tough.
It all starts with design. A tough commercial quality elevator for any parking structure has to be durable first. This is the thinking behind the MEM Elevator System for Parking Structures such as the Bellflower Project as seen below. First and foremost our parking structure elevators begin with a rugged hoistway or shaft welded together from tube steel. They pass inspection in any Seismic or hurricane zone. Then comes the solid steel sling and strong Galvaneal steel elevator cab. All are designed for heavy commercial use. Why? We know what the elements can do and anticipate high passenger traffic. So the unit is engineered to take a bruising in all circumstances a parking garage elevator has to take.
It is also engineered to look great regardless of the building design. Once the fully installed elevator is in place (in less than four hours), nearly any exterior cladding can be applied to match the architects plans for the rest of the project. Just because it has to be one tough elevator, doesn’t mean that it is not flexible in the look. It is then started up in a week and ready to be inspected and used. Our system is so fast in placement and start up it can also be used as a construction elevator.
Additionally, our parking structure design includes special accessories. Vandal resistant features are a must. This includes the control panel and elevator buttons that are created specifically for difficult environments. They are not plastic and easily broken. The overall cab finish can also be designed to be cleaned and buffed like in the above photos. This will help remove graffiti and to stand up to rough treatment. A wood core elevator cab is never a solution for this kind of environment. They use just a thin metal laminate to cover the particle board. They cannot take the demands of cleaning. Also, if the wood core gets wet you know the results. Swelling, chipping, warping and the laminate glue comes loose.
The MEM Elevator System for Parking Structures comes with a ceiling with recessed lights designed to withstand harsh treatment as well. They can also be replaceable if need be. All exterior hoistway finishes on doors and frames are flat, paintable and easily cleaned. The hall calls are in the frame of the door, making them tamper resistant, tough and vandal resistant as well. NEMA-4 Type wiring enclosures can also used to protect the elevator workings against weather conditions.
We have a well thought out approach when it comes to durability. That is due to our decades of experience in the elevator industry in both service and manufacturing. We know the challenges so you benefit from our years of knowledge. Bottom line, we know what it takes to design and build one tough elevator. But beyond that, we deliver it when you need it on the jobsite as a fully installed unit. Here are some videos showing how easy it is.
So, for your next project it maybe time to explore the possibilities of the MEM Elevator System for Parking Structures. See how our experience regarding elevators and parking structures can be a perfect fit. You can click the button below for a Fast Track Quote for a project you currently are working on. However, if you want to explore it more, request a LIVE VIRTUAL TOUR. We would be happy to pull back the curtain and show you how we produce the industry’s most successful modular elevator solution.
Quality is crucial when it comes to anything we buy. That is especially true when we are talking about a commercial quality elevator. The stakes are high and a shaky elevator ride can give a person a lasting negative impression. But more than that a commercial quality elevator carries passengers. So there is a need for quality for the sake of the safety of the elevator riding public. Quality is important. Yet it can seem illusive as with most projects the elevator is the biggest moving object in the build and extremely complex.
Additionally, apart from safety and overall building aesthetics (feel of the ride) there are many others reasons why quality is so crucial too. A lack of hitting high standards also cost time and money on projects. We have all experienced a time when we made a purchase only to return the item for a replacement and then had to return it again. Frustration, waste, anger, agitation and disgust filled our minds as we get in the car for the third time. With quality there is assurance, peace, pride and pleasure.
So how do we achieve our high standards and why do we say “commercial quality elevator” so often?
First we tend to say it a lot because of factors beyond our control. Perception can be misleading, but in the minds of many a reality. With modular there is sometimes the perception that with the ease modular provides there must be compromises. The product in many ways seems to good to be true so mentally there is a leap to possible issues that don’t exist. We have been working diligently for decades to dispel that notion. In every project we produce we care deeply about quality and it shows. So in reality it is more of messaging to correct a perception may have had some grounding in fact, but is now decades past its shelf life. We are quality at MEM.
We also sometimes have pushback from a threatened industry. The monolithic elevator industry sees the writing on the wall, but due to their business model, they cannot extricate themselves from the traditional elevator build and installation. They have literally been doing elevators the same way since the mid-1800’s. No kidding. Elevator installation has not changed since the Civil War… our Civil War… in the US… over 160 years ago! In 1859 the Cooper Union Foundation Building had an elevator shaft built in (even though passenger elevators were not available). Then, once completed the elevator was brought into the shaft on piece at a time just like today. That model has not changed since. What other product on Earth has seen less innovation in its process since the 1860’s? Innovation threatens so they attack.
In a nutshell, the above are the reasons we stress our quality so much.
More importantly, how do we achieve quality? We can say we have quality and that quality is worth having, but all that talk is completely nullified if we can’t produce it. We do and I came up with five ways we assure quality with every project going out the door:
This refers mostly to the hoistway, elevator car and sling and other items we manufacture in house. The factory process uses templates, quality materials and well thought-out and practiced procedures. For instance our cab is tough Galvanneal steel easily produced to exact sizes by use of templates and guides. We would never use flimsy particle board covered in glued on laminate. That kind of cheap product is apt to warp, expand and flake.
This term encompasses the pride of the team members at MEM and their experience. It begins with the sales representatives. They are the most informed and knowledgeable people regarding modular elevators and elevators in general you can find. This is crucial as they guide the process from beginning to end. They set the pace and know each project completely and intimately. We also meet every jurisdictional requirement with licensed welders, electricians with years of experience and employees that have pride in their work. Lastly, we thoroughly inspect every elevator we manufacture with a 10 Point Inspection – Check List. Using that list a certified elevator technician performs the inspection. In this way you can be sure that when we ship an elevator, it is the quality we promise. We also provide consistent inspections through out the build.
Dirty little secret…they are all the same. It really does not matter the name plate on the control panel in the car. Every elevator contains roughly the same components. All the parts have to meet the same high standards regardless of the company providing them. High-quality standards are demanded and required by law, by jurisdictional code and by regulation. We abide by all to produce quality everytime.
Our factory process produces consistent quality. But that does not mean we are stuck in old ways or not flexible in design. We think though what we do, provide for flexibility and constantly assess how we can improve. We test and update our process as needed. Additional benefits including being inside a factory. Cold and heat do not interrupt our manufacturing, nor do they act as an impediment to consistency. Whether we like it or not if it is snowing outside at 20 degree, traditional construction suffers. This is seen every time a traditional built hoistway it not plumb or level. Our building practices are perfect every time and on time every time.
Two quick points. Our design is based on more experience than any other modular elevator company. Also, the engineering is improved consistently over time. We have made design improvements that others have not. Also, not only do MEM elevators meet the engineering standards of difficult Seismic areas, they are also used in high wind or hurricane areas. The MEM Elevator System is also designed for more efficiency in installation and setting the elevator. Our experience in the industry makes us the leader in design and engineering.
When we say our team has a fully-installed commercial quality is set in four hours we mean it. The same goes with start up. When power is available we can have your elevators running in a week. This is due to our superior quality. Our team consists of elevator people through and through. Passing inspection easily is the rule because of the design, engineering, production process and quality.
It is one thing to talk about quality and quite another to see it. So we invite you to see it firsthand. You can click below to schedule a LIVE VIRTUAL TOUR. We will pull back the curtain and let you see what we are doing, how we do it and why it is the best option for all low and mid-rise projects. The difference in quality will be clear. Of course during the tour you can ask any questions you want. We are open with our process and proud to show it off.
If you have a project in mind already click the button below for a FAST TRACK QUOTE. We will contact you for additional particulars, but will provide you with a budget number with in 24 hours. There of course is no hard sell or obligation. We just want to be able to answer your questions, find out your challenges and help be a solution. That is how we are a part of the elevator revolution.
Never miss a blog post again. Sign up for our monthly email newletter. Get important information about elevators, the modular industry and more.