The property was designed with the single lift installation provided for residents, despite the scale of the building.
This meant that whenever the lift broke down, the residents were left with stairs as their only option to reach their apartment (often carrying shopping or with children).
When selecting the lift for the installation, the building developer did not take the need for a robust and reliable service into consideration and selected a lift of basic design and compliancy. The unit was of a value engineered type commonly found within low-midrise environments.
When undertaking remedial works to a lift, refurbishment often offers the most cost-effective solution to provide reliable lift service over the long term.
Refurbishment schemes utilise the existing lift static components i.e. guiderails, car slings, etc. which do not endure wear during operation.
The benefits of retaining this equipment reduces onsite programme (reducing the period of no lift service at the property during the works) reduced material and labour costs and has significant environmental benefits (preventing the removal, manufacture and replacement of similar equipment).
Whenever we undertake Lift Condition Surveys, we look at a number of factors, including the environment the lift is operating within, the lift shaft design and its limitations, the level of service within the building and if this can be improved. This ultimately enables us to offer the scheme of greatest value to the client.
These two elements combined could improve the experience of the residents with shorter waiting and travel times from the lift, which would help to offset such a large property only being equipped with a single lift installation. Therefore, we recommended a new installation over a refurbishment due to the original lower quality equipment not lending itself to future usage and the potential to improve the performance of the lift to the benefit of the users.
Client Requirements & Design Duties
Following the issue of our report we were asked to provide the Client with a full range of professional services for this project including specification writing and tendering the project (to both independent lift contractors and major manufacturers), undertake a full tender analysis (comparing components, procurement of materials, onsite programme, and cost) to ensure the Client received best overall value.
Ardent undertook post tender interviews with the two most competitive tender returns to ensure the specification had been fully understood and see if further value could be obtained. Once the interview process was complete a contractor was selected, and the project commenced. The winning contractor offered a new firefighting passenger lift, compliant to regulations with an increased car size, load capacity, lift speed, performance, and improved energy efficiency.
Essential Works During Lockdown
The project commenced in February 2020 and was progressing well, when the Covid-19 pandemic struck taking everyone by surprise. As all around the country people tried to put things in place (both at home and at work) to mitigate the situation, the residents of the property were facing the prospect of life without lift service for the foreseeable future.
However, after careful consideration and a full risk assessment, the installation team were able to come up with a safe plan of action to continue the installation whilst adhering to Governmental guidelines and maintaining social distancing. The contractor’s decision to use staff located within a 3-4-mile radius enabled the team to cycle to the property without the need of public transport, minimising risk to both their team and also the residents within the building.
Don’t take our word for it – here’s what our client had to say:
One of our residential developments in London had lift reliability issues, so we engaged with Ardent Lift Consultancy to advise our Client on the options available to them to ensure reliable lift service at the property. For HML and our Client, it was paramount Ardent delivered a cost-effective solution.
The Ardent team recommended a new lift installation rather than refurbishing the existing lift which offered greater load capacity, operational speed, and lift performance. Gareth and Chris successfully managed the project during the Covid19 situation and ensured the lift contractors could safely deliver the project.
From our initial dealings with Ardent to the completion of the project, we have been impressed by their work ethic and would highly recommend Ardent Lift Consultancy.
Wayne Savage BA (Hons), MIRPM AssocRICS
Senior Property Manager