One can only imagine how complex the construction of a 53-story skyscraper can be. Add in a five star hotel, a spa, some luxury residences and the 183 Wellington Street building has all the elements for one very challenging project. People Flow magazine takes a look at the necessary ingredients to make a partnership successful between the project’s general contractor, EllisDon, and KONE.
With its urban limestone and sapphire glass structure in Toronto’s downtown financial and entertainment district, the 183 Wellington project promises to be one of the key landmarks on Toronto's attractive waterfront skyline.
This impressive building will be equipped with 15 KONE MiniSpace™ elevators and 4 service elevators, which will be responsible for ensuring the smooth and safe flow of people inside the building. Catering to various customers such as hotel and spa guests as well as residents, the building will include several elevator groups and landings.
Apartment residents will have their own exclusive lobby and elevators; some elevator landings will offer direct access to a residence. One elevator even has its machine room and controller situated beneath the actual elevator shaft.
Communication is key to relationshipFor the past 2 years, KONE has been working alongside general contracting company EllisDon, one of North America’s largest construction contracting companies, to ensure that once the building is ready, customers will be able to travel smoothly, safely and quickly between the skyscraper’s 53 floors.
But what are the musts for a contractor when dealing with an elevator company on such an imposing project? Darren Croghan, of EllisDon and responsible for the 183 Wellington project, believes that the transfer of information is crucial in a project of this magnitude.
“It all comes down to good communication, which boils down to trust. In a huge project like this, there’s bound to be obstacles along the way and things will need to be solved quickly. Nobody wants surprises in this business, because they usually end up costing time, money and resources to fix. By keeping the communication channels open, we are able to solve issues together, which make the entire process much smoother,” comments Croghan. “We might be two different companies, but ultimately we have formed a team with KONE. We work jointly towards the same goal and it has worked out to be a great partnership between both companies.”
According to Sherif Fayek, KONE Canada’s senior vice president of Business Development, this is something that companies in the elevator industry have sometimes overlooked in the past. “Elevator companies typically do not have the best communications practices, but we want to change that. I believe KONE is making an effort to be a better communicator, not only through our daily verbal conversations with customers but also with improved processes and tools.” Fayek adds, "Both our KONE eOptimum web-based reporting system and our field mobility program are core examples where we can add direct value to our customers’ operations regardless if they are a multi-million contracting corporation or a smaller facility management firm.”
Adding unique value to the mixWhen asked what the key elements are behind a successful partnership, Fayek agrees with Croghan on the importance of communication, and also underlines the importance of adding value for customers.
“KONE and EllisDon worked together right from the start. We have a dedicated team that is devoted to adding value to the partnership and to the success of this job. Such collaboration from the get-go enabled us to get the best possible outcome and to see how we could optimize EllisDon’s operations on the construction site,” explains Fayek.
For the project, KONE designated a specific project manager as well as an installation site manager in order to facilitate the exchange of information between both companies. This ensured that everything went according to schedule during construction. In fact, KONE’s installation manager was allocated an office on the construction site.
“By having KONE’s Sam Weatherall on-site during construction, we were able to be in constant contact with the contractor and their workers,” says Chris Plummer, KONE project manager for the 183 Wellington Street project. “We were able to have frequent meetings with the contractor and we were even able to solve a few of their logistical problems by offering our expertise in elevators for construction time use.”
“We knew that this job would involve difficult and complicated aspects. But with extensive communication and planning, they became non-events and everything progressed flawlessly. At the end of the day, the most important thing for the customer is that their operations go smoothly and on schedule,” sums up Plummer.
KONE Canada is a significant supplier of solutions in the Toronto area.Read more »
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