The Wildest Types of Elevators from Around the World
An elevator is a tool so engrained into everyday life that it’s easy to take for granted. It’s only when you step into an unusual one, like the bedroom-sized cargo elevator in the Anchorage Museum — presumably used for transporting large exhibition items — that you begin to ponder the epic motorized mechanism. As it turns out, elevators come in all species of weird, wacky and useful. These are just a handful of the stranger types out there.
This is more common for industrial uses and meant to move large loads of materials, sometimes up to or over 20,000 pounds. You can even get a residential freight elevator installed in your home for convenience in lugging large objects up and down floors.
This European design is an elevator that never stops moving. Lacking any doors, you can hop on and off the lift as it moves past open floors — just be sure to get off by the top floor, otherwise, you’ll be in for a ride up and over the top as the chain attached to each compartment circles around to continue its journey back down.
The Falkirk Wheel
The world’s only “boat lift,” this masterpiece of engineering connects two canals of different elevations by gradually raising a boat from the lower canal using a boat (or water of equal weight) from the upper canal as a counterweight. The result is a slowly spinning wheel that will deliver the upper boat to the lower canal or the lower boat to the upper canal.
Shanghai Tower Elevators
While these are simply passenger elevators meant to get you to the top of the second tallest building in the world, they hold the unique record of fastest elevators in the world. With over 2,000 vertical feet to cover, it’s no wonder these elevators can reach speeds of nearly 46 mph.
You might be stuck with the same office elevator that goes at a mindbogglingly slow pace, but someday you could stumble into one that blows your socks off. Just hope someone doesn’t press the button to every floor first.