elevators

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Features, History, Technology

Advances in engineering continue to push modern skyscrapers to dizzying new heights, but at the core of these structures, quite literally, is an often overlooked technology that’s been key to their proliferation: the elevator.

The earliest known reference to the elevator was by Roman architect Vitruvius, who reported that Archimedes built his first elevator around 236 B.C. The design was fairly rudimentary, a platform using pulleys and hoisted by hand or by animal. While elevators found their way into countless buildings and homes in the centuries that followed, including that of Louis XV who used a private lift to connect his Versailles apartment to that of his mistress, it wasn’t until the late 19th century that their true potential was unlocked.

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Policy, real estate trends

In Case of Fire, Take the Elevator to Safety

By Diane Pham, Fri, March 20, 2015

elevator fire

If you work in a tall tower, throw everything you ever learned about fire safety out the window because the Fire, Buildings and City Planning Departments are re-writing the rules. In response to the supertalls popping up across Manhattan, the agencies are looking to create more occupant-evacuation elevators that can be used to move people down a tower in the event of an emergency. Because, really, can you imagine trying to flee down 90 flights of stairs?

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