Here at W.L. Decker, we love to look to the future to understand both industry trends, and technologies that we could use in our future contracted commercial builds. When we take on a restaurant or retail construction project as the general contractor, we make sure to use all possible tools to get the job done under budget and on schedule. Today we’re spotlighting some really innovative technology that just came on the scene last month—a cable free elevator. Dubbed a “maglev” this elevator uses a magnetic levitation system that suspense the cart to glide freely up and down the 807-foot-tall test tower in Rottweil, Germany.

This elevator also has an additional mind boggling feature, the ability to move not only up and down, but also side to side. It may seem like something out of Willy Wonka, but according to Rich Haridy author at New Atlas, “[This elevator] would allow multiple cars to move vertically and horizontally in a single shaft using a magnet-based drive system similar to that in Maglev trains.” The manufacturer Thyssenkrupp debuted the first working maglev elevator in mid June, and it has people talking. Haridy goes on to say, “ThyssenKrupp’s research and development contains 12 shafts that can test elevator speeds up to 10 meters per second (22.45 mph), plus three dedicated shafts especially designed for certifying the new cable-free elevator system.”

A lot of the commercial contracting construction jobs we take on wouldn’t benefit from such a elevator system, but taking note of these types of technological advancements is something we see as vital. Knowing what kind of technology exists as well as where the construction industry is going is vital for us to understand smart investments in our work. These elevators will likely start showing up in ambitious skyscraper projects, but parts of this technology could start proving helpful for us in the very near future. This elevator boasts a lower energy consumption rate, which is something that we could feasibly be seeing beneficial in things like restaurant and retail construction projects. As general contractors for these types of projects, we are excited to explore these technologies and see where it takes us.

You can read the full article on New Atlas here.