Vertical transportation (VT) system design in super-and-mega-tall buildings is extremely challenging. As VT designers, we have to meet with the basic international standards at the same time as dealing with the many conflicting design priorities, parameters and the wide-ranging requirements of architects, building developers and operators. It involves the art of design coordination, integrating the needs of all stakeholders into one harmonious solution.

There is no end to the creativity of architects when it comes to designing extremely tall, iconic buildings. Building developers and designers want their projects to stand out, with attractive eye-catching building shapes to differentiate them from their neighbours. These can take any form, from conventional squares and rectangles to circles, ellipses, triangles, rhomboids, fans and any other variety of shape that the designers can imagine.

The shape of the building impacts on the vertical transportation design. For example, for a round office building with a circular central core, the elevators may have to be designed in a ‘fan’ shape to increase handling capacity, floor efficiency and also to match the building form.