In every tall building, elevators are absolutely a vital feature, but even they have their limits. For example, they can only move so quickly, plus they typically are unable to move sideways to fetch patrons from the far side of a building. However, it looks as if those issues will be resolved by German firm ThyssenKrupp, as their new Multi elevators aim to replace cables for magnetic linear motor technology (also used in maglev trains) to move elevators vertically AND horizontally so they can service very wide or unusually shaped buildings.
These Multi elevators can operate in loops and aren’t limited by height, so it’s fairly easy to install multiple elevator cars in a single shaft. Ideally, you’ll never have to wait longer than 30 seconds for a lift to arrive, plus the space-saving design allows building owners offer more (or at least larger) apartment and office units. Now, Multi isn’t actually the first cable-free, horizontal elevator to be proposed, as MagneMotion already has a system in use onboard an aircraft carrier for delivering weapons. The difference is that Multi’s system might be the first ones that you’ll actually get to use.
ThyssenKrupp is planning on conducting real-world tests for its elevator system in a trial tower around 2016, since the hardware is intended for use in civilian buildings. Should the tests and trials be successful, you’ll never have to spend minutes-upon-minutes waiting to get to the floor you’re trying to get to in the future, whether it’s four floors up, or even if it’s at the very top-level of a skyscraper.