ThyssenKrupp, Germany’s tech giant, has just announced what it considers to be the largest evolution in elevator technology in 160 years with Multi, a multi-car elevator that loops up and down as well as sideways.
Multi ditches the traditional cable pull systems with maglev technology and uses a shared elevator shaft that will see the cars move in a looped path that acts similar to a ferris wheel, allowing for increased traffic and reduced wait times.
While much shorter wait times could be considered a win in itself, ThyssenKrupp’s real objective with Multi was to remove the design constraint that current elevator designs have put on modern architecture. With current elevator systems, some buildings require passengers to board multiple elevators to reach parts of a building, but with Multi’s ability to move horizontally, that would no longer be a problem.
ThyssenKrupp also claims the reimagined system would occupy up to fifty percent less space, freeing up prime real estate for offices and apartments.
The first implementation of Multi is underway in a 240-meter tower currently under construction in Rottweil, Germany. It is expected to be open to public use sometime in 2016.