The 1667-ft., 101-story building has 67 elevator units, including two that service the 89th-floor observation deck and qualify as the world’s fastest. These rocket skyward at a peak speed of 3314 ft. per minute (fpm) […]
I’ll save you the math — that’s 37 m.p.h (59 k.p.h) vertically. You had to see a video of these things — they flew up and down the shaft like they had rockets attached. You could almost see a smoke trail.
When Joe and I were in Chicago for the Basecamp thing, we visited the Sears Tower. Now, that’s a tall building with some fast elevators — it took maybe one minute to get to the top. But those elevators travel at a mere 18 m.p.h. (29 k.p.h.). How pedestrian. You may as well take the stairs.
The real challenge was the human factor. To hold down noise — for those in the building, as well as in the elevators — the observation-deck shuttles are shaped like twin-nosed bullets, reducing aerodynamic drag, what is known in the trade as windage. They’re equipped with sound-isolation shrouds, acoustic tiles and isolated floor platforms. Even the counterweights are aerodynamic.
The one really cool thing they don’t mention is that several of the elevators (not the high-speed ones that service the observation desk) are two stories high. I couldn’t quite figure it out from the show, but it appears that when one of the floors of the elevator stopped on one of the building floors, the other floor of the elevator opened on the building floor above or below it…maybe. I’m not sure.
(I’m betting that there’s a Gadgetopia reader out there that has visited this building, or who knows someone that works there, or who knows someone who knows someone, etc. I want to know how this works — tell a friend. Preferably a Taiwanese friend.)
Some more great information about the monster that is Taipei 101 here, here, and here. But, if you’re a complete dork like me, you won’t want to miss the Taipei 101 article in that Bible of vertical conveyances, Elevator World Magazine.