Ultra Compact Cores

An Innovative Approach to Designing Lift Services for Super Tall Towers 

Architects and developers are acutely aware of the value of every square metre of building space that can either be sold or leased. Building designers are therefore constantly striving to maximise net/gross ratios. Lifts are by far the largest “space taking” component of the building core and therefore demand very careful consideration.

MovvéO has been developing a range of solutions to reduce the “footprint” of the lift core within a high rise building using a series of advanced software and planning techniques.

These techniques include:

“Expert” System for Traffic Analysis – Advanced applications that can simulate thousands of hours of lift traffic within minutes enable local passenger lift systems to be optimised

Ultra Compact Cores – Back to Back Lift Shafts for Super Tall and Mega Tall Buildings

Time Shared Lifts – Using the Same Lifts for Different Building Uses at Different Times

Shuttle and Local Goods Lifts – Just as the passenger lifts have for many years been arranged as shuttle and local service from a skylobby for efficiency it is possible to arrange skylobbies for materials and waste handling in a super tall building

“Super-Sized” Lifts – Super large capacity lifts (80 persons) can be a different experience and offer radically new solutions to “people handling” problems

By way of example here is a project that adopted all of these techniques which, in turn, enabled a 69% net/gross ratio to be achieved on a 600m 130 floor tower comprising offices (with a density of 10 sq m net per person), hotel, apartments and VIP club.





By judicious design it is possible to arrange groups of lifts “in-line” and back to back with no space for lift lobbies utilised in the core.

By alternating the local service groups of lifts to serve floors from opposite sides of the core it is possible to arrange the lift shafts back to back so as to absolutely minimise the space taken in the core. The groups of passenger lifts then “peel away” from the main core as one moves up the building. In the diagram above one can see that the lift core resembles an “upturned layer cake”. In plan the back to back lift shafts to each end of the core can be seen. Such a design approach leads to a multi-level main floor arrangement such as shown here which can work well when sitting alongside multi-level retail facilities etc for circulation.