Cesare Attolini, world-renowned Italian suit makers, opened their first U.S. boutique in New York this year at 798 Madison Avenue. Given the impeccable Attolini style, a standard platform (wheelchair) lift, simply would not suffice. Handi-Lift worked with Shamut Design and Construction and the architects to execute one of the most beautiful and challenging lift installations we have ever attempted. It could not have been done without the expert glass and polished stainless work by INA Building Shop.
The basic lift underneath is the Genesis by Garaventa with a roller chain hydraulic drive system. A shoe was added on top of the drive mast so that the glass could be extended to the ceiling on all sides of the enclosure.
The platform features a stainless COP with bare-edged glass car sides. We tiled the pit floor and covered the underside of the platform with stainless to maintain the flawless look when the lift is at the upper landing. The black granite flooring contrasts beautifully with the polished stainless panels on the face of the mast.
Floating on Air
When you step into the lift at the upper landing it feels as though you’re floating on air. The shear glass wall is only thing separating you from the dramatic chandelier; you could almost reach out and touch it. The millwork trim around the entrances matches the adjacent cabinets, softening the impact of the glass and stainless, and creating a warm and inviting feel.
The biggest challenge of this project was working in this small space with so many other trades in a tight time frame. The end result is not only Accessibility with Dignity, but Accessibility with Style.
We used Dorma BTS75 floor closers with ¾” offset pivots so the box does not protrude into the hoistway. The interlocks are Folger Adams 401R deadbolts wired into the lift to monitor the door closed and the bolt extended. This design eliminates additional hardware on the glass door as the lock is in the header and the bolt protrudes into a hole in the patch hardware. The hall stations are single button and the lift is keyless for ease of operation. The disconnect and manual lowering device were hidden behind a panel in the adjacent cabinet to avoid any exposed mechanical devices.
We had to add signage stating “no freight” and “capacity 500#s” required by the ASME A18.1 safety standard, but didn’t have time to integrate this into the hall station so there is a temporary plastic sign. Eventually the universal access symbol and the required language will be etched into polished stainless plates to complete the look. Even the accessories must match the overall style.
We reduced the live load from 750 to 500 to compensate for the added weight on the platform so it would not be overloaded, or exceed safety factors. The glass is 5/8” thick and the largest pieces are over 10’ in length presenting a challenge to install. In order to support the upper sections of glass, a steel tube was extended in line with the header around the side of the enclosure between the enclosure and the stair, and a frame was installed in the ceiling behind the finishes to receive the glass and stabilize it.
Covering the face of the mast with polished stainless panels was a challenge on this type of lift due to the slots required in the face for the sling arms to protrude to support the lift. This means the center panel (which has to be removable for service) floats anchored in a slot at the bottom and pinned only at the top. The fascia wall under the upper gate was originally to be covered in polished stainless, but the architect decided to change it to a painted panel to match the walls in order to avoid a bright reflective surface facing the lower.
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Project Managed by
Architectural Metal & GlassINA Building Shop
Project Designed by
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