24 Custom Elevator Cabs for Shirley Ryan AbilityLab Formerly Rehabilitation Institute (RIC) of Chicago.

Thyssenkrupp Elevator Corporation (TKE) has become a service leader in the industry by providing critical time and energy efficiencies through safe, reliable, and cost-effective vertical transportation solutions. By working with world-class design partners and outsourcing to credible custom elevator cab manufacturers, the company provides highly customized elevator cabins that fulfill specific architectural design schemes. A recently completed project at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, previously named Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, was outsourced to G&R.

New-age healthcare facilities have unique needs, and must therefore address many specific challenges related to manufacturing equipment, systems, and machinery. TKE’s new construction project team integrated custom cab design, engineering, and manufacturing to produce 24 custom elevator cabins for the AbilityLab facility.

The project started in 2012, when best-cost solutions, based upon preliminary needs and designs, were sought out from qualified custom cab manufacturers. After careful examination of past project results and industry reputation, the project management and design teams chose to move forward with G&R. The project involved destination dispatch systems, predictive technologies, and custom cabins for various parts of the building: Sky Lobby, Visitor, Staff & Transport, and Medical Observation.

A mock-up was constructed in March, 2015, to evaluate lighting options and make final surface decisions.

Working with Gensler and HGA Architecture, the elevator companies priced 33 cab designs as the teams demonstrated their design experience. According to G&R’s Sales Director, John Omorean:

“Right from the start the TKE team was very focused on providing solutions that met the needs of this new-age medical facility in its systems, machinery, and service. Our team was attentive to their needs—we were right beside them every step of the way.”

In March 2015 the design team visited G&R’s Minnesota facility, where one elevator cab mock-up was produced. It included all the necessary components—cab shell, wall panels, handrails, car-operating panels (without button illumination), ceiling, angled rear wall panel with floor indicator, sill, transom, and lighting.

At first glance you’ll notice that the centerpiece ceiling extends down the rear wall and is framed in block-style lighting down to the floor. The ceiling and rear walls are set in binder angles, and are comprised of Avonite® glass and stainless steel bar trim. Pieces of bar trim are installed at 25-inch intervals and include 1/32” – 1/16” tolerances to accommodate expansion and contraction of panel materials. Sidewall panels are faced with stainless steel in two different finishes, #4 satin and Diamond. Friezes, recessed bases, and transoms are also in stainless steel #4 (satin finish) while sills are nickel silver.

See photos of this very unique elevator cab in our project gallery.